December 13, 2016 / 4:50 PM / a year ago

New Danish government hails Uber as competition boost

COPENHAGEN (Reuters) - Denmark’s new right-wing government will allow Uber to continue operating under new rules in order to encourage more competition among taxis, its transport minister Ole Birk Olesen said.

A photo illustration shows the Uber app logo displayed on a mobile telephone, as it is held up for a posed photograph in central London, Britain October 28, 2016. REUTERS/Toby Melville/Illustration

Under new proposals put forward by the government on Tuesday, Uber [UBER.UL] drivers must meet certain criteria, including paying tax and proving they are in good health. At the moment they operate without any rules.

Olesen said he saw no reason why Uber should not compete with established taxi companies, although he wants to implement rules that distinguish between taxis which are ordered via an app and those where customers hail them in the street.

But the government, which has only 53 seats of 179 seats in parliament, faces a majority which does not support the plan as well as opposition from the Danish People’s Party (DF), which would normally support government proposals.

“I regard the initiatives as an open door to Uber, which I do not like. We shall not have two sets of rules as proposed,” DF spokesman Kim Christiansen told Reuters.

A Social Democrat spokesman also dismissed the proposals. Together, the two parties have 85 parliamentary seats.

Reporting by Erik Matzen; Editing by Alexander Smith

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