Taxi drivers demonstrate against Uber in Budapest

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Since early this morning, approximately 100 taxi drivers have been demonstrating against the Hungarian operations of San Francisco-based ride-sharing service Uber, Hungarian news agency MTI reported.

Closing all lanes except two at one of the busiest intersections in Budapest on Andrássy út, taxi drivers slow traffic during an impromptu demonstration. (Photo: MTI/Péter Lakatos)

Traffic has been secured by the Hungarian Police, and drivers have been requested to avoid the area surrounding the demonstration.

Placards placed on the windscreens of the taxis show the word “Uber” crossed out in red, with the accompanying message: “No thanks!”.

Taxi drivers are reportedly opposed to Uber drivers and their cars not requiring the same scrutiny and examinations as taxi drivers.

On June 24, the Hungarian government approved a decree, that came into effect on August 6, requiring local drivers for Uber to become licensed taxi drivers, however, Uber has continued its operations in Budapest regardless of the decree.

Taxi drivers previously held demonstrations on March 19 and June 16 against the U.S.-based ride-sharing service and have vocally opposed the Hungarian operations of Uber.

Uber offers a HUF 380 base fare, while under a decree in effect since September 2013, the base fare for taxis operating in Budapest was set at HUF 450.

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