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Uber Negotiates With Moscow’s Transportation Department, Signs Collaborative Agreement

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(Credit: NICOLAS MAETERLINCK/AFP/Getty Images) The logo of Uber car service app is seen on a smart phone during a protest by Brussels taxi drivers against the taxi-app Uber, on September 13, 2015, in Brussels. BELGIUM-TRANSPORT-UBER-TAXI-STRIKE
March 15
6:10 AM 2016

Uber Technology Inc. has signed a collaboration agreement with the Moscow authorities to limit its service to drivers with transportation licenses. The alternative taxi riding service has also agreed to share driver and passenger data with the local government.

The world's largest mobile taxi ordering service has been provided 90 days' deadline to confirm all of its registered drivers are licensed by the state. Both Moscow transportation department and Uber press service has confirmed signing the agreement, reports Global Voices.

Russian transportation department has previously planned to ban Uber in Moscow subject not agreeing to share information on car routes. Use of only the licensed authorized drivers has been cited as another major criterion to operate car hailing service in the country, reports Bloomberg quoting Maxim Likustov, head of Moscow's transportation department.

Uber has been witnessing tough competition in Russia from larger fleet containing Yandex NV and Gett. The car hailing service offers low-cost UberX service and black cars in the country to attract passengers. Currently operating in seven Russian cities, Uber plans to expand its network in 17 more cities by the end of this year, according to a report published in the Daily News.

Through signing the collaborative agreement, Uber agrees to recruit only the licensed taxi drivers possessing state permit to drive a taxi cab. This is somehow different from Uber's policy in the US, where it allows ordinary drivers earning cash through offering transportation service using Uber app.

The service design has offered an alternative measure to expensive taxi cab licenses which are even hard to get. Due to such relaxation, Uber service is banned in several other countries since using unlicensed drivers is unsafe and illegal. To prohibit such flaws in offerings, the countries have imposed stricter regulations on taxi cab market.

Moscow authorities have insister Uber to sign an agreement with them in 2015, but the car hailer has sought extra time to discuss with its top management in San Francisco. The transportation department of Moscow has even threatened to sue and ban Uber to operate in Moscow during February 2016.

Top management of the alternative taxi riding service has visited Moscow for negotiation with the local authorities. They have demanded access to the state Interior Ministry data bases to check for the drivers' criminal records. However, the demand has been out-righted since transportation department is unable to reach such information, as per the local law.

Moscow's transportation department has been mulling to prohibit Uber from operations unless comply with local regulations. Top management of Uber has tried to negotiate with the authorities but finally has been forced to sign a collaborative agreement. Under the agreement, Uber also needs to share its traffic information with the local authorities.

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