About a week ago, Chinese authorities raided the offices of Uber in the City of Guangzhou. The company was accused of operating illegally despite having set up its operations in China in 2013. Uber offers UberBlack, UberX and UberXL services in Guangzhou. During the ride, the authorities alleged that Uber lacked the legal status to provide taxi services
In an interesting turn of event, the Guangzhou’s municipal transportation bureau is preparing to launch its own ride-sharing app, known as Ruyue to rival Uber. Ruyue operates under the same model as Uber and will be led by the same authority that authorized the raid on Uber offices. According to Chinese newspaper Nanfang daily, the difference between Ruyue and Uber is that all vehicles using the government led services will go through a local government approval process so they will get special licenses and then provide legal transport service to customers unlike Uber.
The City has allocated 2,950 vehicles to serve users of the service with four taxi firms winning the bid to operate the vehicles. The drivers are mostly former taxi drivers and have received what the local authorities says are proper licensing and registration with the municipal authority.
The move by the Chinese authorities adds to a myriad of issues facing Uber which have included bans in several cities such as New Delhi and South Korea. Other issues have involved security of the application with a hacking incident exposing the data of the users. Uber has also faced internal issues with drivers demanding employment benefits instead of serving as contractors. There is also a lawsuit accusing Uber of discrimination against dogs and persons living with disability.
Source: Nanfang Daily
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