Uber offers to make concessions to reverse TfL decision over its licence

25 Sep 2017


US taxi firm Uber has offered to make concessions as it seeks to reverse a decision by London authorities not to renew its licence in the city, which comes as a potentially big blow for the fast-growing company, a newspaper reported.

The Sunday Times further quoted sources close to London's transport body as saying the move was encouraging and suggested the possibility of talks.

''While we haven't been asked to make any changes, we'd like to know what we can do,'' Tom Elvidge, Uber's general manager in London, told the newspaper. ''But that requires a dialogue we sadly haven't been able to have recently.''

According to The Sunday Times, Uber's concessions would likely involve passenger safety and benefits for its drivers, possible limits on working hours to improve road safety and holiday pay.

Transport for London (TfL) stunned the powerful US start-up on Friday when it deemed Uber unfit to run a taxi service for reasons of safety and revoked its licence from 30 September, although the company could continue operations while it appealed.

According to the regulator, the company had chosen not to report serious criminal cases. It also failed to conduct sufficient background checks on drivers and neglected safety issues.

The move was backed by London mayor Sadiq Khan, a member of the opposition Labour Party.

''At the flick of a pen Sadiq Khan is threatening to put 40,000 people out of work and leave 3.5 million users of Uber stranded,'' Greg Hands, the government minister for London, wrote on Twitter late on Friday.

''Blanket ban will cause massive inconvenience to millions of Londoners, showing that the mayor is closed to business and innovation,'' Hands tweeted. ''Once again the actions of Labour leave ordinary working people (to) pay the price for it.''

Meanwhile, supporting to strip Uber of its licence, Khan said: ''All private-hire operators in London need to play by the rules. The safety and security of customers must be paramount,'' Reuters reported.

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