This is a key step to ensure that urban mobility rules are fit for the digital age. EU rules will be crucial to help modernizing outdated regulations and creating a level playing field for ride-hailing, enabling access to a safe and sustainable alternative to private cars for all European citizens. Move EU supports the Commission’s finding that smartphone based hailing-apps have increased quality and efficiency in the way taxi and PHV services are provided.
As identified by the notice, current legal frameworks applying to ride-hailing platforms, operators and drivers across the EU differ significantly. In most Member States we see different regulatory conditions for on-demand Taxis and PHV that create an uneven playing field. This makes it difficult for ride-hailing platforms to serve the growing demand for mobility services. It is therefore crucial to ensure flexible legal frameworks that apply to on-demand taxi and PHV mobility services.
We welcome the Commission’s Notice as they address some of the obstacles that hamper the deployment of on-demand mobility, such as capping of licenses, rigid taxi fares, the return-to-garage rule, empty rides, exclusivity clauses, burdensome conditions for drivers and obstacles to allow for pooling.
Move EU is pleased to see that the Commission rightly identified on-demand ride-hailing platforms as enablers to decarbonise transport. In combination with reducing empty runs and particular emphasis given to promote ZEVs in fleets, the ride-hailing sector can truly unlock the twin transition.
However, Move EU is concerned that the legislative tool that has been chosen by the European Commission will not allow the legal frameworks to keep pace with the innovation brought by on-demand ride-hailing platforms. It is for this reason that we call on the European Commission to monitor progress in Member States closely, and consider developing a legislation to achieve minimal harmonisation across the EU and meeting EU’s digital and environmental transition goals.