Bulgaria's Competition Protection Commission Launches Uber InvestigationBusiness | April 16, 2015, Thursday // 11:48| views
The Bulgarian Commission on Competition Protection has started an investigation against the service for joint travel UberX, as reported by Investor.bg.
The municipality has stated that security in online payments poses a problem regardless of the company's assurances that this is not the case.
According to local legislation, offering a taxi service that requires payment needs to be registered prior to the start of its operation. Therefore, investigators from the municipality are demanding an official stance from the commission on whether the service thus provides conditions for unloyal competition.
Uber became active on the Bulgarian market on December 9 2014 through a mobile app. Meanwhile, Uber has provided a license agreement to Rasier Operations B.V. and it is the company connecting the drivers and clients in Bulgaria.
Uber has issued a statement asserting that neither them or Rasier have been providing transportation services. In order to become a part of the service, the drivers sign a contract with Rasier who in its turn poses certain requirements. Drivers should be at least 21 year old, need to have a valid driving license, as well as a functional vehicle for over three years.
In the middle of February licensed taxi companies threatened to block roads and to stage protests against the operation of the company in Bulgaria on account of ''stealing of passengers'' thus causing severe losses to the sector.
A counter-protest page was soon established in social media. The organizers have stated that they defend the right of free choice of passengers on the transportation method of their choice.
Bulgaria's Transportation Minister has also openly criticized Uber as in his words, the company does not comply with the Bulgarian legislation. His comment was on account of the fact that the State Income Agency, the Interior Ministry and other institutions have launched a joint action against the company.
Uber has been experiencing a problems with the local governments in Belgium, France, Germany, the Netherlands and Spain as well on account of violating licensing procedures for taxi services.