Science

Uber CEO Says Company's Future In Brazil In The Balance

Uber has said that, if the bill was approved in its original form, it would undermine its ability to operate in Brazil, its second-biggest market, by making it too expensive and bureaucratic for many of its drivers.

Taxi drivers have protested Uber because they view the ride-sharing service as unfair competition.

Pic: ReutersBRASILIA: The chief executive of Uber Technologies Inc, Dara Khosrowshahi, said on Tuesday that his company's future in Brazil depends on government decisions, as the Brazilian Senate prepared to vote on regulating vehicle hailing apps. But many current Uber drivers work for the service more or less full time, eroding the distinction between drivers for ride-hailing services and traditional taxi drivers. Uber said it did not organize the protests, but did alert authorities to them.

Increased regulations and licensing requirements would run counter to Uber's business model, which uses part-time drivers who view the service as a side gig.

"The bill will create so much bureaucracy that it prevents the 500,000 drivers in Brazil from earning income for their families", Uber said in a statement.

Uber said it has paid BRL 495 million ($150 million) in federal and municipal taxes so far this year.

In recent days, car-hailing companies such as Uber and Cabify had urged Brazilians by WhatsApp and social media to press their senators to vote against the measure, which was authored in the lower house by a congressman from the leftist Workers Party backed by taxi cooperatives and unions.

If the Senate votes to approve the bill, it will be up to President Michel Temer to sign or veto the legislation or parts of it.



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