Uber Ride-Sharing Service Banned in France

Tim Maytom

[caption id="attachment_50277" align="alignleft" width="300"]uber driver france An Uber driver in Paris[/caption]

Uber continues to hit legal roadblocks to its ride-sharing and taxi-booking services, with the UberPop service which enables unlicenced drivers to serve as taxis to be outlawed in France from 2015.

The announcement comes shortly ahead of a protest by taxi unions in France, which plans to block 260km of roads around Paris during the morning rush hour with slow-moving motorcades.

"Not only is it illegal to offer this service but additionally for the consumer, there is a real danger," said Pierre-Henry Brandet, spokesperson for the French interior ministry, speaking to iTele. He cited the inadequate insurance of drivers as a major issue that had influenced the decision.

The decision marks a reversal on the verdict reached in a commercial court on Friday, where a judge refused to ban UberPop on the grounds of unfair competition in a lawsuit brought by Uber's competitors.

Uber has already seen bans in Delhi and Frankfurt due to various legal concerns, and the company's French subsidiary has already been fined €100,000 (£79,000) for fraudulent business practices after it advertised UberPop as a car pool instead of a paid transportation service.

Officials in Spain, Brussels and the Netherlands are all reportedly moving towards legislation that will ban at least some Uber services on a temporary basis, as lawmakers struggle to apply existing laws to the disruptive service.