View of arbitrators

Burning question: Uber and Grab’s legal status

04/01/2018 09:45

Vietnamese lawyers suggest that Vietnam should manage Uber as a transportation firm using a ride-hailing application, based on the European Court of Justice (ECJ)’s decision that Uber is a taxi service.

vietnam economy, business news, vn news, vietnamnet bridge, english news, Vietnam news, news Vietnam, vietnamnet news, vn news, Vietnam net news, Vietnam latest news, Vietnam breaking news, Grab, Uber, Mai Linh

Emboldened by the ECJ's decision, Vietnamese lawyers call to re-label Uber and Grab Europe's top court ruled that Uber should be regulated as a transportation company and not a tech firm, forcing it to comply with national regulations that it has previously been able to ignore. The decision came only a day after the company was accused at a London court of becoming a menace to public safety by forcing its drivers to work exhausting hours.

Lawyer Truong Thanh Duc, representative of the Vietnam International Arbitration Centre (VIAC), said that the ECJ’s decision on Uber will not impact Uber’s legal status in Vietnam, however, it should provide momentum for local authorities to reconsider their stance.

According to Ha Huy Tu, representative of the Hanoi Lawyers Association, at present, local authorities have failed to properly manage Uber's operations as they have yet to issue a final decision about the legal nature of the company in Vietnam. Thus, ECJ’s decision should serve as a suggestion for Vietnam to build a better management policy for Uber. Tu also considers Uber as a transportation service company.

Duc added that Uber is a technology company operating in numerous countries under the “transportation in collaboration with technology” or technology taxi model.

However, Vietnam should list the operations of Uber in one of three models. First is a ride-hailing application in co-operation with professional taxi services. The second is a ride-hailing application in co-operation with private cars without having a business licence for taxi services but having a general business licence. The third is a ride-hailing application in co-operation with private cars without any business licence.

Duc stated that it would be the most constructive if Vietnam opted for the first model. Regarding the second and the third model, Vietnam needs to build close and flexible management policies to stimulate the transportation firms using technology to develop. 

Previously, right after the ECJ issued the decision on Uber, Ho Chi Minh City Taxi Association proposed the Ministry of Transport to identify Uber and Grab as taxi transportation firms. According to the association, if Uber affirms that it is just a tech firm, it is not permitted to build a fare table or directly sign contracts with taxi drivers. Besides, it is not permitted to use foreign capital on promotion and advertisement programmes to create unfair competition with traditional taxi companies.

In addition, Ta Long Hy, deputy general director of Vietnamese taxi company Vinasun, said the company would persist with suing Uber and Grab for unfair competition.

Hy said that either Vinasun or employees together will start a lawsuit. The three taxi associations of the three regions of Vietnam (north, south, and central) also signed a proposal to the Ministry of Industry and Trade asking for an investigation of the promotion activities.

Credit: VIR

Share Post
  • Experts warn Vietnamese investors of bitcoin bubble 26/12/2017 08:50

    Investors of bitcoin in particular and cryptocurrencies in general should be aware of the possible risks involved in addition to rapidly increasing profits, experts have warned.

  • Vietnam – Real Estate Sector – Current Issues and Solutions for Investment and Outlook on Major Trade Deals TPP 11 and EUVNFTA 20/12/2017 09:35

    The provisions of the mentioned regulations have brought more investment in the real estate market to Vietnam. They have reduced barriers for investment and widened accessibility to properties in Vietnam.

  • HCM City’s new policies to boost competitiveness 19/12/2017 16:51

    Under the resolution, HCM City will be able to strengthen resources and create new driving forces for development. The special policy devolves power to the city to make decisions on issues that are now made by the Prime Minister, including land administration; investment; finance/budget; delegation of power to lower levels of administration; and salaries of officials, public employees and civil servants. 

  • Policy changes pose obstacles for foreign investors 14/12/2017 14:49

    Although foreign direct investment (FDI) has played an important role in boosting Việt Nam’s economic growth, recent changes in policies and regulations, which are not consistent with international best practices, have exposed many foreign investors to considerable risks and obstacles in executing their investments.

  • Should Foreign Pharma in Vietnam Start Incorporation? 14/12/2017 10:39

    Under previous laws, foreign pharma representative offices (“ROs”) in Vietnam were allowed to employ medical representatives. Presently, Article 76.6(b) of the Law Pharmacy No. 105/2016/QH13 (“2016 Pharma Law”) disallows ROs from employing medical representatives and unless the government reverses the situation, this rule will to stand. 

  • Enterprises have to create barriers protect IPRs by themselves 12/12/2017 14:37

    For the IP registration of businesses, Mr. Tran Manh Hung, IP expert, VIAC arbitrator, and lawyer of Baker & Mckenzie Company in Vietnam, said that registration of procedures to establish the trademark with simple procedures, low cost but have not yet been paid attention by enterprises, especially for start-up businesses. This was the difference between domestic enterprises and foreign enterprises to start investing in Vietnam.

  • APEC Vietnam 2017 30/11/2017 16:58

    “Asia – Pacific economic cooperation (APEC) plays a meaningful role in the Pacific’s joint economic development. APEC, currently having 24 members, represents nearly 40% of the world’s population, 57% of the world’s gross domestic product (GDP) amd 50% of world trade. APEC Vietnam 2017 positively influences Vietnam’s production efficiency, business activities and investors with the level of influences defending on the host Vietnam’s ability. At least up to now, that ability is highly apreciated by APEC and it, when realized, will make the influence more clear.”

  • Government advised to re-define public debt 25/10/2017 09:57

    The World Bank and the International Monetary Fund define public debt as debt liabilities of the public sector including the central government, local administrations, central banks, organisations guaranteed by the State, State enterprises and funds that the Government has committed to pay such as pensions and insurance.