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Ho Chi Minh City transport dept wants to block Uber

Sunday, June 04, 2017, 12:27 GMT+7

Authorities in Ho Chi Minh City have suggested banning Uber as the ride-hailing service is not included in the city’s pilot plan on electronic contracts for passenger transport.

The municipal Department of Transport has submitted a letter to the People’s Committee asking to temporarily shut down the activities of Uber Vietnam as the firm is not allowed to join a pilot program on managing passenger transport service via electronic contracts in 2017.

The pilot scheme has already included Grab Vietnam, along with V.Car and MCar, which are managed by two of Vietnam’s major taxi operators, Vinasun Corporation and Mai Linh Group, respectively.

The short-term ban on Uber is meant to control the number of cabs operating under electronic contracts during the pilot phase, thus better managing the city’s plan to improve local taxi services.

According to the transport department, Uber has not fully complied with the Vietnamese law on business during its operations in Ho Chi Minh City since 2014.

The agency had several times sent a document to ask the company to follow the regulations, but the effort was neglected.

Such wrongful operation has compromised the local business environment and affected other passenger transport firms such as Grab, V.Car, and others, the department said.

Uber has been quite notorious in Vietnam for being the only mobile application-based transport company to persistently duck business registration and tax obligations.

A representative from the Ho Chi Minh City Department of Taxation told Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper in late May that the firm had only paid tax for itself and its drivers since October 2016.

Meanwhile, its other tax duties since 2014 had yet to be fulfilled despite continuous requests from local authorities, the representative added.

Earlier this year, local Uber drivers complained about having between 15 and 25 percent of their earnings end up in the company’s pocket.

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