The on-demand ride-sharing service, Uber has been banned from Seoul as it was deemed illegal by the city council. The local authority had passed a law which prohibits the services of Uber in the city. The ruling forbids a fee-paying transport service using private or rented motor vehicles unregistered with the authorities.
An Uber representative in Seoul has denied that the service is illegal, and claimed that Uber simply provides the technology to connect passengers with drivers rather than running a taxi service.
With efforts on suppressing the company from building their startup in their own country, Seoul has already taken measures to build its own app that works with the official local cabs, which will be launching in December. The app boast similar features to Uber’s, such as geo-location data on cabs nearby and information on drivers with their ratings.
This is not the first time Uber has been given restrictions like this. The company had been banned from several other major cities as well, including some from their own country such as, New York, San Francisco and Chicago. The company even faced a radical retaliation is Paris where Uber vehicles were attacked by angry taxi drivers in a protest.
As for now, it doesn’t seem possible for Uber to set its roots in Seoul, especially after a driver was fined 1 million Won (RM3000+) for soliciting a customer through Uber while driving a rented car.
Even with the amount of obstacles, it seems as the luxury limo service is far from giving up in taking high initiative to expand their business around the globe.
[Source: The Wall Street Journal]