Uber said it would suspend its authorized service in Greece after new legislation was passed that would impose stricter rules on passenger theft. As in other European countries, Uber has long faced opposition from taxi owners in Greece for taking their business.
According to Reuters, the new regulations require that each trip start and end at the designated headquarters or parking area of the fleet partners, something that Uber does not do. A digital record of all shared-travel platforms and their passengers will also be created. They would also require UberX drivers to be employees of fleet partners such as car rental companies or tourism agencies. Their cars could not be more than seven years old according to the new rules.
The data record and the requirement to return to the garage would only apply to transport services such as Uber and the local carpool service, Beat, while taxi drivers can use cars up to 22 years old. UberX was launched in Athens in 2015, and more than 450,000 people have used their application to book a trip, the company says.
"We have to assess whether we can operate within this new framework and how we will do it, so we will suspend uberX in Athens from next Tuesday until we can find an appropriate solution," a Uber spokesperson said in a statement. "We look forward to working with all local stakeholders to find ways to enable Greeks to enjoy the benefits of modern technologies such as Uber."