Europe

Romania: hundreds of taxis, buses protest against Uber

Hundreds of taxi and bus drivers protested outside Romania's government offices on Wednesday to demand that Uber and other online ride service be outlawed.

Drivers parked some 200 taxis and buses outside the office buildings in the capital, disrupting transport in the already crowded city, and blew vuvuzela horns.

The protest, which had been planned to last all day, ended early after the government agreed to pass an ordinance within days better regulating taxi services.

Minister for Public Consultation and Social Dialogue Gabriel Petrea met with some of the protesters and the two sides signed a protocol where the government pledged to pass the ordinance within 30 days.

There were no details immediately available how Uber would be affected.

The Confederation of Licensed Transport Operators says it wants "online technology platforms that provide unauthorized taxi services to be outlawed," to protect licensed carriers.

Uber says it is a ride-sharing service with transparent costs and its drivers pay taxes. It says some 250,000 clients have used its services in the Romanian capital and other major cities in the past two years.