Seoul plans to flag down Uber taxi app

Uber has been under pressure in a number of cities. (Duncan Alfreds, Fin24)
Uber has been under pressure in a number of cities. (Duncan Alfreds, Fin24)
Seoul - South Korea's capital Seoul said on Monday it planned to ban the smartphone car-hailing service Uber, saying it raised passenger safety issues and threatened the livelihood of licensed taxi drivers.

The Uber app which allows clients to connect directly with "black car" services was launched in Seoul in August in 2013.

But the city council said it bypassed strict controls imposed on licensed taxi drivers, including background checks, insurance and vehicle upkeep and safety.

"We are looking into related laws to block Uber and similar apps that arrange such illegal transportation activities," the council said in a statement.

"Uber users should be aware that it's hard to be covered by insurance even if a car accident occurs, let alone the issues of potential mechanical problems and background of drivers," it said.

The council said it would roll out its own mobile app for hailing existing, licensed taxis in December.

"Uber is charging customers while avoiding the regulatory process, which creates unfair competition for taxi drivers and encroaches on their business," it said.

California-based Uber is the most prominent of the apps that are shaking up the traditional taxi landscape in cities around the world.

It has already faced significant resistance from regulators in several countries, who accuse it of unfair competition and lack of standards.

The firm also sparked angry protests by cab drivers in nations including France, the US and Germany who fear it is chipping away at their client base.

Uber operates in 41 countries in the Americas, Europe, the Middle East, Africa and the Asia-Pacific.
ZAR/USD
16.97
(+0.36)
ZAR/GBP
21.20
(+0.22)
ZAR/EUR
19.19
(-0.20)
ZAR/AUD
11.84
(-0.04)
ZAR/JPY
0.16
(+0.14)
Gold
1784.58
(+0.54)
Silver
18.27
(+1.50)
Platinum
821.00
(+1.54)
Brent Crude
42.85
(0.00)
Palladium
1931.00
(+1.04)
All Share
54846.28
(+0.60)
Top 40
50503.91
(+0.65)
Financial 15
10134.53
(-0.15)
Industrial 25
76434.98
(-0.16)
Resource 10
51142.00
(+2.00)
All JSE data delayed by at least 15 minutes morningstar logo
Company Snapshot
Voting Booth
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Results
I'm not really directly affected
18% - 1650 votes
I am taking a hit, but should be able to recover in the next year
23% - 2171 votes
My finances have been devastated
34% - 3222 votes
It's still too early to know what the full effect will be
25% - 2345 votes
Vote