Uber Technologies Inc. faces a ban on offering ride-sharing services in Berlin a little more than a week after the company was able to overturn a similar proscription in Frankfurt that applied to the entire country.
A Berlin court today said the municipal government in the German capital had the right to block the San Francisco-based company from offering both its UberPop and UberBlack services because it doesn’t have the proper license, court spokesman Stephan Grosscurth said in an e-mailed statement today.
The court allowed the city to use fast-track rules to issue the order while the company had previously won the dismissal of cases in Berlin and Frankfurt that sought to use emergency procedures. A court in Frankfurt on Sept. 16 said groups representing traditional taxi operators had waited too long to seek the urgent rulings.
“The ban serves to protect the viability and functioning of the taxi services, in which the public has an important interest,” said Grosscurth, citing the judges. It was “necessary to protect customers from dangers to life and limb, because their security doesn’t seem to be guaranteed under the business model” of Uber.
Today’s cases concerns measures issued by the city government, which is handled under different rules than the cases filed by the taxi groups. Uber’s German press office said it couldn’t immediately comment on the ruling.
Governments and regulators in cities around the world are restricting Uber’s business on the grounds it poses safety risks and unfairly competes with licensed taxi services. Cabbies with permits that can cost 200,000 euros ($254,000) apiece have staged protests in European cities including London, Madrid, Paris and Berlin.
To contact the reporter on this story: Karin Matussek in Berlin at firstname.lastname@example.org To contact the editors responsible for this story: Anthony Aarons at email@example.com Peter Chapman.