Uber to halt Taiwan service

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Uber is about to slam on the breaks in Taiwan.

The company behind the ride-hailing app announced on Thursday it was pausing its Taiwan service from February 10 in response to an intensified crackdown on its operations that began last month.

Uber, which launched in Taiwan four years ago, has refused to comply with instructions from the government to register as a taxi company and follow the same safety and insurance standards as other companies in the industry.

In response to Uber’s continued insistence that it was not a taxi company, the government on January 6 raised the maximum fine that could be levied on Uber and its drivers for providing illegal transportation services to NT$25m ($780,000) from NT$150,000. Prior to the increase fines already totalled NT$92m.

In its blog post announcing the halt, the US company asserted it was only pausing the service to “create a new path forward”. It added: “We hope that pressing pause will reset the conversation and inspire President Tsai [Ing-wen] to take action.”

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