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New regulation on car-hailing services released

Updated: 2016-07-28 16:45
By Guo Kai (chinadaily.com.cn)

New regulation on car-hailing services released

A customer checks his smartphone app that eases finding a taxi in October, 2015. [Photo/China Daily]

The Ministry of Transport released the country's first nationwide regulation on car-hailing services on Thursday, offering legitimacy for the booming industry.

The car-hailing services have been popular in China in recent years to meet with people's travel demands, but they operate in a gray area of the law. Private cars are prohibited taking paid rides.

The new regulation says that private cars can be designated car-hailing cars after a certain procedure. The cars must meet with the country's criteria on vehicles, having no more than seven seats, being installed with satellite positioning and emergency alarm devices.

The private cars are required to stop offering rides on car-hailing services after eight years, and they will be forced to retire after running 600,000 kilometers. Provincial governments can make detailed plans to fit their respective local situations.

Drivers who provide car-hailing services should have no record of causing traffic casualties, dangerous driving, drug-using, drink-driving and violent crimes.

Drivers can sign different types of labor contracts and agreements with car-hailing platform companies according to their times of work and frequency in using the apps, which will benefit part-time drivers.

Car-hailing platform companies have to shoulder more responsibilities in securing the interests of both drivers and passengers, arranging rides, setting standards and prices and choosing drivers, according to the new regulation.

The ministry started mulling over the regulation about two years ago. It issued a draft in October last year, which was criticized by many experts for some rules, such as that private cars must be registered as "taxis" and companies needing to sign labor contracts with drivers.

The new regulation will be implemented on November 1.

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