Taiwan’s legislature on Friday ratcheted up the pressure on ride-sharing company, Uber, by significantly raising the maximum fine for illegally providing passenger transportation services.
A Central News Agency reported that an amendment to the Highway Act means anyone caught driving for Uber can now be fined as much as $783,000.
Currently, the maximum fine is 150,000 Taiwan dollars ($4,700).
In addition, anyone found in violation of the law could lose driving licence and have his vehicle registration either terminated or suspended for four months to a year.
According to the Ministry of Transportation and Communications, the revised act is possibly to take effect in the middle of next year after other measures needed are established.
Uber said that the legislature made a rushed decision, taken without consultation.
“We are very disappointed to see the Legislative Yuan pass the amendment bill raising fines against driver-partners on the Uber app to the largest anywhere in the world,’’ Uber said.
“It threatens the interests of tens of thousands of driver-partners and more than one million Taiwanese who have downloaded the Uber app,” Uber said.
Uber registered in the country four years ago as information services company and now has more than 10,000 drivers in Taiwan.
For years, it has been accused of illegally providing passenger transportation services and of tax evasion.
Uber said over 100 cities, regions and countries have already passed ride-sharing regulations that provide a framework for the industry to flourish.
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