Uber argues its case in Europe’s top court
London – 26 April 2017 –
US ride-hailing app Uber has told Europe’s top court it is a digital service, not a transport service, and that a French law clearly targeted online taxi services, in its latest European legal battle with the taxi industry.
In a hearing in Europe’s top court in Luxembourg, the US start-up described itself as a digital platform connecting willing passengers with drivers and said it does not itself provide a transport service, which would see it subjected to stricter rules.
Hugues Calvet, Uber’s lawyer, compared it to online hotel booking services like Booking.com, saying they did not actually provide the room. “In fact it doesn’t give the transport service itself,” Calvet said.
The case before the Court of Justice of the European Union concerns a 2014 French law on taxis and chauffeured services which makes it a criminal offence to organise illegal taxi services and sets restrictions on the use of software to find customers in the street.
Two of Uber’s executives in France were fined last year over UberPOP, Uber’s service using unlicensed drivers, which has since been suspended.