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Uber leaves Colombia After Competition Ruling

 |  February 2, 2020

Ride-hailing company Uber has ceased operations in Colombia after failing to reach an agreement with the country’s authorities about how it should be regulated, reported The Financial Times. 

When users of the service opened the app on Saturday, February 1, they were greeted with a message saying “Adiós Colombia.” “Many thanks for joining us on this six-year journey,” the company wrote in a message emailed to its local users. 

The decision to leave Latin America’s third most populous country follows a court ruling in December that Uber had violated competition law. Uber described the ruling as “arbitrary” and stated it would quit on February 1. 

The San Francisco-based firm had operated in Colombia since 2013 but the government had never regulated it, and it faced constant opposition from powerful taxi drivers’ syndicates. Last year it cancelled plans to build a US$40 million support center in Colombia, citing uncertainty over the regulatory environment.

Uber stated it provided employment for around 88,000 drivers in Colombia and a service to 2.3 million users. The government stated it should have registered itself as a transport company in Colombia and had repeatedly refused to do so. 

Many of those drivers and users are expected to switch to rival ride-hailing services like China’s Didi Chuxing and Greece’s Beat, which both operate in Colombia. However, in the light of the recent court ruling their future in the country is also in doubt.

Full Content: Financial Times

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