Tue, Nov 15, 2016 - Page 4 News List

No tailor-made legislation for Uber, minister says

By Shelley Shan  /  Staff reporter

The government has no intention of drafting specific legislation to regulate Uber, Minister of Transportation and Communications Hochen Tan (賀陳旦) said yesterday, adding that it would be difficult to remove the UberEats app from mobile app stores.

Controversy over the ride-sharing app remained the focus of discussions at a meeting of the legislature’s Transportation Committee yesterday, which was scheduled to review the budget for the Institute of Transportation for fiscal 2017.

Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) legislators Cheng Pao-ching (鄭寶清), Chao Cheng-yu (趙正宇) and Cheng Yun-peng (鄭運鵬) mentioned UberEats, an app developed by Uber to deliver food from restaurants to its users’ homes, and asked what the ministry was going to do about it as Uber Taiwan is today set to unveil the details of the service.

The lawmakers said that UberEats should not be available for download if Uber continues to operate illegally in Taiwan, adding that taking down the app is the only effective solution to the problem.

UberEats plans to recruit motorcycle riders who are 19 or older, whose motorcycles are less than 15 years old and can carry items weighing 15kg, the lawmakers said, adding that it might encourage many young motorcycle riders to take a part-time Uber job.

Should the ministry fail to regulate the food delivery service, the nation would see more motorcyclists speeding or swerving in and out of traffic, they added.

Hochen said the ministry would crack down on drivers or motorcyclists working for UberEats, even though they would be carrying food rather than people.

However, he said there might be a problem if the government requests that the app be taken down from mobile app stores, which could cause there to be litigation with e-commerce operators.

The ministry is to send an official notice to Uber to address the situation, Hochen said.

He said Uber is apparently interested in expanding its market in Taiwan, but it insists on doing business its own way.

“Uber has only two ways to go, it either becomes taxi company or a taxi service operator. The latter can develop an app that matches consumers with legal taxi services. I am sure that Uber should know by now our determination to keep handing down fines if it is unwilling to become a legal operation,” Hochen said.

The bottom line is that Uber should be regulated, pay taxes and ensure that passengers are fully insured, Hochen said, but the government would not draft a tailor-made law to regulate the ride-sharing app.

This story has been viewed 2229 times.

Comments will be moderated. Remarks containing abusive and obscene language, personal attacks of any kind or promotion will be removed and the user banned.

TOP top