Uber denied new licence to operate in London

12.00 | 22 September 2017 |

Image: Uber

Transport for London (TfL) has announced that Uber will not be issued with a new private hire operator licence after the expiry of its current licence on 30 September.

In a statement issued today (22 Sept), TfL says it has concluded that Uber London Limited is ‘not fit and proper’ to hold a private hire operator licence.

TfL says that it considers Uber’s approach and conduct to ‘demonstrate a lack of corporate responsibility in relation to a number of issues which have potential public safety and security implications’.

The issues stated include Uber’s approach to:

  • Reporting serious criminal offences
  • How medical certificates are obtained
  • How Enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) checks are obtained
  • Explaining the use of Greyball in London – software that could be used to block regulatory bodies from gaining full access to the app and prevent officials from undertaking regulatory or law enforcement duties

Uber was licenced as a Private Hire (PH) Operator in 2012. On 26 May, TfL granted a four month PH Operator Licence while it concluded its consideration of a new five year licence.

While TfL says no further comment will be made pending any appeal of the decision, it stresses that its regulation of London’s taxi and private hire trades is designed to ensure passenger safety.

TfL adds that private hire operators must meet rigorous regulations, and demonstrate that they do so, in order to operate.

The announcement has been met with support by Mayor of London Sadiq Khan, who says that any operator of private hire services in the Capital ‘needs to play by the rules’.

He said: “I want London to be at the forefront of innovation and new technology and to be a natural home for exciting new companies that help Londoners by providing a better and more affordable service.

“However, all companies in London must play by the rules and adhere to the high standards we expect – particularly when it comes to the safety of customers. Providing an innovative service must not be at the expense of customer safety and security.

"I fully support TfL’s decision – it would be wrong if TfL continued to license Uber if there is any way that this could pose a threat to Londoners’ safety and security.”

Category: General news.


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