Hungary's Government Considers Banning Uber

Hungary’s government is considering tighter regulations to eliminate "black market" taxi services, including banning their mobile applications, the Development Ministry said after demonstrations in Budapest last month against Uber Technologies Inc.

"The government backs cab drivers, who provide their services and pay taxes in line with regulations," the ministry said in an e-mailed statement. The police has already started imposing fines of as much as 800,000 forint ($2,880) on drivers who didn’t meet "personal and technical" requirements, the ministry said.

Uber, the app-based ride-sharing company, has disrupted traditional taxi companies’ business model across the globe. Hungary’s government pledged to tighten rules after cab drivers shut down traffic in January in protest against competition from Uber. Drivers said they’ve been forced to invest in new cars and paint taxis yellow in exchange for higher fares, while Uber drivers don’t have to meet the same regulations and charge less.

More stringent regulations proposed by the ministry include empowering police to take off the number plates of offenders and removing their cars from circulation, the ministry said.

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