Uber will stop operating in Denmark beginning April 18. The company announced on March 28 that it will shut down services in the Scandinavian country due to new taxi laws.
Danes have been using Uber for three years. Because the company employs 2,000 drivers in Denmark with an estimated 300,000 monthly users, the shutdown will affect a large part of the Danish population. A man living in Copenhagen told EuroNews, “I think it’s a pity because I’ve used it myself.”
Uber claims that it is already working on solutions to restart operations in Denmark. The company stated, “We will continue to work with the government in the hope that they will update their proposed regulations and enable Danes to enjoy the benefits of modern technologies like Uber.”
However, the company has met opposition from politicians and local taxi drivers. Taxi drivers argue that their firms are held to higher legal and safety standards. Because Uber does not always comply with these same standards and does not have to pay the costs associated with such safety features, some Danes have called Uber, “unfair competition.” In 2016, Danish prosecutors took the company to court on charges of breaking national taxi laws, which led to fines for two drivers. Many politicians have backed this anti-Uber movement, leading to the new taxi laws requiring seat occupancy sensors and fare meters that have forced Uber out of Denmark.
The European Commission in Brussels has asked countries to refrain from disrupting the formation of new businesses such as Uber. Brussels issued a statement emphasizing that the commission must “encourage a regulatory environment that allows new business models to develop.” As taxi associations and European politicians continue to challenge Uber, the company’s future operating status rests in the hands of the EU commision.