More pain for beleaguered taxi sector

Updated 2017-06-02 09:30:55 Shanghai Daily

Shanghai's taxi industry faces further reform.

The city's transportation commission said yesterday it was considering measures such as changing the existing taxi franchise system and taxi fare structure, and tightening punishments on taxi drivers and companies that flout regulations.

Traffic law enforcement officials also launched a campaign yesterday to crack down on violations such as overcharging and cherry-picking.

The transportation commission is also considering setting up more taxi stands and encouraging passengers to phone or use online platforms to book a ride, and then to wait in a taxi stand for their vehicle. This is expected to improve the operational efficiency of taxis.

To crack down on violations such as overcharging and cherry picking, the authority threatens to revoke operation qualifications of drivers, and to cut the operation quota of offending taxi firms. Drivers who flout regulations also face being recorded in the city's public credit system.

In the first four months of this year, the city's traffic law enforcement authority reported 4,470 cases of taxi violations, many of them involving taxi drivers letting others drive their vehicles without authorization.

The city's taxi industry was rated the least satisfactory public service industry in the city twice in a row, Shanghai's ethics promotion office said in April. The industry was therefore deprived of the title of "civilized industry," which is biennially awarded to public service industries that meet public approval.

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