Sorry, taxis: Uber will not suspend services in Thailand

The Uber logo is seen on a mobile phone. Illustration: Toby Melville/ Reuters
The Uber logo is seen on a mobile phone. Illustration: Toby Melville/ Reuters

Uber has refused to comply with the government’s request to temporarily stop their popular services while the Ministry of Transport is conducting a study about ride-sharing apps.

Despite an intense crackdown on Uber drivers, the U.S. giant ride-sharing company says it will continue to operate in Thailand while it is in talks with the Thai government on how to make the services legal.

At the meeting, Uber urged the government to amend the existing Motor Vehicle Act so that it allows for ridesharing in Thailand. Uber is pleased that the government agreed to conducting independent third party research into ride-sharing regulations and the benefits they bring to Thailand, ” said the statement by Amy Kunrojpanya, Uber’s Director of Policy and Communications, Asia Pacific.

“We remain committed to our mission of providing reliable transportation for everyone and will continue to serve Thai riders, drivers and cities,” she said.

The Ministry of Transport estimated that the study will take 6-12 months. In the meantime, driving for Uber remains illegal in the kingdom, and violators are subjected to a fine of THB2,000 maximum for using a private vehicle to provide public transport.

In the past month, eighteen Uber drivers were fined in the “Uber witch hunt.” A few locals who had foreigners in their cars say they were reported and mistaken for Uber drivers.

READ: Man accused of being Uber driver after giving ride to foreign friends

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