Drivers of online transport platforms Uber, Bolt (formerly Taxify) and clever have announced a demonstration for Sunday to protest against a transport law amendment that would effectively ban such services.
The government regulation that came into force today says only licensed cab drivers are allowed to offer passenger transportation – drivers of bus and car rental companies are exempt. The regulation is enforced by a RON 5,000 (EUR 1,000) fine and a withdrawal of their car’s license plates for up to six months.
Two of the companies operating transport applications (Uber and Bolt) sent messages to their users reassuring them that the service remains uninterrupted and they will offer financial and legal support to their drivers.
“We want to assure you that Bolt will continue its operations in București, Cluj-Napoca and Timișoara (the three Romania cities where Bolt has active operations)”, the Bolt message to clients read. “We will also offer partner drivers financial and legal support.”
While drivers announced the demonstration for Sunday in the Romanian capital’s Victoriei square, transport minister Răzvan Cuc told Romanian news agency Mediafax that the ban was “fake news” and that at a meeting with their representatives, he assured online platform drivers that their activities will not be banned.
“The regulation (…) was aimed at combating piracy. Uber is not piracy, so this is a serious misunderstanding”, Cu said, adding that he will have another meeting with the drivers next week to discuss the regulations being drafted for the online platforms.
Title image: ziare.com