Shanghai government cracks down on unlicensed vehicles in Didi, Uber

Ride-hailing platforms including Didi Chuxing, Uber China, Yidao Yongche and UCAR were each fined RMB 100,000 (USD 15,210) respectively, executive team of the Shanghai Municipal Transportation Commission (SMTC) told China’s digital news outlet The Paper on Wednesday.

Since March 25, when the remediation campaign of transportation in Shanghai started, more than 2,700 unlicensed passenger vehicles have been penalized. According to the SMTC, the campaign covers 58 key areas, especially areas near airports and train stations, where forces are pooled to uncover illegal acts such as ride-hailing services providers providing information for unlicensed and unqualified drivers or vehicles.

Data from the SMTC show that 285 cases on illegal passenger transport have been investigated at the two major airports in Shanghai, a YoY increase of 196%. In addition, law enforcement agencies have found and punished over 200 “cloned taxis”, i.e. unlicensed profitable passenger vehicles. Drivers of cloned taxis would have their driving license withheld and be charged with 12 penalty points on their license.

SMTC pointed out that not all ride-hailing platforms are serious about the verification of drivers’ identity, or the management from within the platform, and that running passenger vehicle services for profit without a license is illegal.

An SMTC insider said that among the four ride-hailing platforms, Uber China, Yidao Yongche and UCAR have received one fine respectively, while Didi Chuxing has received two. That being said, according to CNR, SMTC and Didi were working jointly on building a platform offering taxi information in Shanghai last June, which was also the first time in China that a third-party ride-hailing app cooperates with a government organ.

While the Chinese Ministry of Transportation released draft regulations to curb the car-hailing business last October, some parties, including car-hailing service providers and users, see the curbing regulation as controversial.

(Top photo from Baidu Images)

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