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Uber granted temporary licence to operate in London

Uber

Uber has been granted a temporary licence to operate in London following a court hearing.

The hail riding firm’s licence renewal was refused by Transport for London (TfL) when it expired last September, because TfL said Uber was not a "fit and proper" operator.

Uber has now been awarded a licence but it has been put on probation for 15 months.

Caroline Pidgeon, chair of the transport committee, said: “Uber has now been granted the temporary right to operate in London having promised to up its game in terms of safety and working conditions.”

She said court action has forced Uber to improve its working practices and Transport for London needs to make sure that the conditions of the licence renewal are strongly enforced.

She continued: “The London Assembly welcomed Transport for London’s decision in 2017 not to renew Uber’s licence as we were very concerned about its working practices and safety record.

“The safety of Londoners must come first and we will be keeping a close eye on the way Uber operates.

“All operators need to play by the same rules so there is a level playing field.”

Following a two-day hearing at Westminster Magistrates' Court, Chief Magistrate Emma Arbuthnot said Uber was now considered "fit and proper".

She ordered the company to pay TfL's legal costs of £425,000.

Mick Rix, national officer at GMB, the driver’s union, said: “As a result of pressure from drivers and the public, Uber have been put on probation.

“This shows that Transport for London and Sadiq Khan made the right call taking them on.

“The devil will be in the detail but it’s quite clear now that Uber has been forced to change its ways.

“However shiny their technology, no operator can be above the rules or flout decent employment practices.”

The company said that it had made "wholesale" changes to the business since last September.



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