Taxi Drivers On The Warpath Against The Return Of Uber To Barcelona

The sector makes a slow march through the city center as a protest against the start of the company's activity, which denounces an "intimidation campaign" against associated drivers

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The taxi drivers want to prevent Uber’s third attempt to consolidate its offer in Barcelona be the one of the charm. Hundreds of vehicles have made this morning a Slow march through the city center against the start of the activity of the American company in the metropolitan area.

After leaving the Catalan capital two years ago after the decree law of the Generalitat which requires establishing a minimum waiting time of 15 minutes to offer the transport service to customers, the technology company recently announced its return as a transport application but without offering its own fleet of cars. Uber assured that it had 350 taxi drivers that, following the model that already works in the Madrid’s community, would be integrated into your platform. The news unnerved the guild, which through the association Elite Taxi He expressed his most belligerent reaction and announced mobilizations with the aim of invalidating the company’s activity.

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Although for the moment they have ruled out a strike like the one that occupied the streets for several days in the summer of 2018 [también en Madrid], the iconic vehicles painted in black and yellow have wanted to take their first pulse this morning with a Slow march through the center of Barcelona [600 coches según la Guardia Urbana y más de 3.000 para los organizadores] with two significant stops. In the first, before the headquarters of the employer Work Promotion, which has spoken in favor of Uber can operate in the city, they have launched bills with the face of their president, Josep Sánchez Llibre, and the motto “Promotion of precarious work”. Later they went to the headquarters of the Parliament of Catalonia, where they had planned to meet with some representatives of the political groups of the Chamber.

Uber has today asked the authorities to take measures to stop “the intimidation campaign” that, he assures, sectors of the union are carrying out against professionals adhering to his platform. The company maintains that, since last Tuesday, it has received more than 10,000 requests for trips in the city, but that many drivers are “afraid to go out to work.”

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The spokesperson for Elite Taxi, Alberto ‘Tito’ Ã ?? lvarez, argues that his collective is in favor of competition between the applications of the sector, but considers that, when companies such as Uber They “take over the market”, the workers “are subjected to their conditions.”

No fixed price rate

The taxi drivers denounce that the activity of the multinational does not comply with the law because, among other reasons, it would operate only with the rates measured by the taxímetros, but without offering the client the modality of closed price (T3). The technology company, for its part, insists on the legality of its service and maintains that it is in contact with the Metropolitan Taxi Institute (Imet) to be able to operate with the complete tariff package.

This body has warned drivers adhering to Uber that, in the case of not providing the T3 option, an informative file would be opened for them. The penalty for non-compliance with the pricing It can lead to fines of between 250 and 1,250 euros. The president of the Imet, Rosa Alarcón, urges the North American company to “comply with the same standards as the rest of the companies working in the sector”.

Uber, on the contrary, it alleges that in Barcelona Other authorized applications are already operating that only offer the taximeter service and ensures that the Catalan Competition Authority is analyzing the performance of the Imet.

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