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25 September 2017, 12:25 | Vickie Mathis
Dara Khosrowshahi is facing his first major issue as Uber CEO
London's new mayor, the extremely liberal Sadiq Khan, has been taking the side of the taxi companies for some time, so when you hear that the announcement was made by the government's transport regulator, Transport for London (TfL), you will likely not be very surprised to learn that Mayor Khan is conveniently enough also the local chairman of TfL. While we haven't been asked to make any changes, we would like to know what we can do.
Khosrowshahi wrote: "Irrespective of whether we did everything that is being said about us in London today (to be clear, I don't think we did), it really matters what people think of us, especially in a global business like ours, where actions in one part of the world can have serious consequences in another".
A source close to TfL told the paper that talks with Uber were a possibility and the move was "encouraging".
Transport for London (TfL), the agency overseeing the city's transit, cited Uber's "approach to reporting serious criminal offences" as a key reason for declaring the company "not fit and proper" to hold a license.
Although the firm's current license expires on the last day of this month, it has a period of 21 days to appeal and Uber cars shall continue to remain on the city's streets until then.
Uber said the ban would show that London is closed to innovative companies.
Uber has 40,000 drivers working in the capital, and a spokesman for Uber said around 20,000 Uber drivers had emailed the city's mayor directly to object to the decision. In 2016, The Licensed Taxi Drivers Association blamed private vehicle hire companies like Uber for causing " unsustainable congestion", costing London £5.4 billion a year.
The TfL rejected Uber's application on the basis that the company was not "fit and proper" to hold a private auto hire operator licence after expiry of its current licence on September 30. Be that as it may, it can keep on operating in the city during the appeal procedure in Britain's courts.
Despite the accusation of failing to take passenger safety as seriously as it should, Uber denied it posed a safety threat to riders and said it had always followed the rules.
And Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn concurred that the company had issues to address, but said Uber had an opportunity to "mend its ways".
TFL decided not to renew the taxi app's licence from the end of the month, risking the jobs of 40,000 drivers. They are saying that "TfL could have given the drivers a little bit more time because a lot of drivers are now out of work".
"This program denies ride requests to users who are violating our terms of service - whether that's people aiming to physically harm drivers, competitors looking to disrupt our operations, or opponents who collude with officials on secret "stings" meant to entrap drivers", Uber said in a statement.
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