Egypt to regulate Uber, Careem ride-hailing services

Egypt said on Wednesday it will regulate ride-hailing services Uber and Careem after they sparked protests from taxi drivers in Cairo over allegations the smartphone applications bypass traffic regulations.

Conventional taxi drivers are up in arms as more and more commuters opt for the two apps for rides in the Egyptian capital.

The cab drivers are not only protesting the loss of clients to Uber and Careem, but also that the two services use vehicles that are not registered for ferrying commuters.

Egypt's Cabinet said the authorities would take steps to regulate the two ride-hailing services.

The parliamentary affairs ministry would "prepare legal amendments to regulate the applications after reviewing similar legislation in other countries," the Cabinet said, adding the changes would be presented within a month.

Uber and Careem drivers would also "have to pay taxes" and their apps would need to establish a "suitable framework for traditional taxi drivers to join them," the Cabinet said in a statement.

Earlier this month, Uber agreed with the Moscow government to use only officially licensed taxi drivers.

Since its launch in San Francisco five years ago, Uber has enjoyed spectacular global growth, and is now operating in more than 60 countries. It began services in Egypt from November 2014.

The United Arab Emirates-based Careem, which operates across 20 cities in the Middle East, has also made inroads in Egypt.

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