Shall Hong Kong legislate the Uber services? It turns into a controversial question after people notice its leading trend and soon reveal its latent problems. Uber is founded in 2009 which is a taxi-and-car hailing app, operating in more than 449 cities. However, it is founded that Uber has many loopholes but its innovated idea can be exploited with suitable implementation and organization so the fences can be well mended. In this case, passing the laws of Uber in Hong Kong should be done as soon as possible because of the safety of passengers, the welfare of Uber drivers and the monopolization of ride-hailing industry.
Concerning the Uber services in Hong Kong, the safety among passengers is a fundamental reason to establish the rule of law. Being one of the safest cities, Hong Kong has a well-established legal system so safety is always the first priority. However, many customers concern their safety towards Uber. Uber has been unable to reach an agreement with the insurance companies to get third-party insurance for passengers, South Morning China Post reported. When it comes to accidents, passengers' safety is no guarantee. Under this circumstance, legislating Uber with high coverage of insurances can ensure the safety of passengers. Requiring Uber to insure the passengers or request the passengers to buy the insurance before using the services. So the riders can enjoy the services in a securer and safer situation. To conclude, preventing the incidents which jeopardize customer safety is one of the causes of Uber legislation.
Despite the safety of passengers, legislating Uber in Hong Kong solves the problem with Uber drivers' welfare. In the present, Uber drivers has no welfare and basic remuneration as there are no contracts between the company and the employees and no labor union as Uber is still illegal in Hong Kong. So they assume most of the costs regarded with the service such as the fuel and maintenance expenses. Coupling with the cancellations of customer orders, the drivers would miss the opportunities to earn money with other customers in need. To help the drivers receive fair treatments, the clear legal framework should be created. Forming the regulations is the most straightforward method, helping plenty of drivers to set up the labor union and stabilize their income by referencing the regulations of European Commission that the passengers must pay the fares once the reservation has been made. To sum up, Uber drivers' welfare can be better improved via the legislation of Uber services.
Last but foremost, the monopolization of ride-hailing industry in Hong Kong can be changed through Uber legislation. There are 18,163 taxis in Hong Kong at present, which was the main and only car-hailing service before Uber entered the market. It was given that many complaints on the high prices of taxi fees but the citizens had no other choices if they would like to take the point-to-point transportation when they were in hurry. In this instance, launching the Uber services offers more alternatives to the consumers so it increases the market shares and forms a competitive market. Meanwhile, it arouses the dissatisfaction of taxi drivers since they have founded that it is unfair and harmful to their interests as Uber is illegal in Hong Kong. Resolving this problem, Hong Kong should legislate the Uber services to create a more diversify market, letting consumers have more options.
On the whole, passengers' safety, Uber drivers' welfare and the monopolistic grip of ride-hailing industry are the major causes of Uber legislations. New technology brings up new types of business, but opportunities contains costs in the meanwhile. In order to forbidden it directly, improving it better through passing the laws is the best way to get out. Especially Uber services are already existing in Hong Kong since 2014 and it does provide more job opportunities and provoke city's economy, shaping the Uber legislation is needed in the present circumstance. Just give it a shot.
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