A little note from Il Piccolo web-site today which appears to have skipped by our newspapers.
BELGRADE: A great European metropolis, paralized for more than 8 hours. By the anger of a few hundred taxi-drivers. This was the scene yesterday in Belgrade where, from the early hours of the morning dozens of cars with the last letters TX of their number plates - the number reserved for taxis - have applied the brakes on the central square SLAVIJA, one of the most crowded squares of the city and on the Avenue Nemanijna, the beating heart of the city, where are the miniatries, embassies and the seat of government, blocking thus private cars, trams, trolley-buses, autobuses and causing the nerves of thousands of Belgraders to jump and distend.
The reason? As has happened in similar manifestations of taxi-drivers in various other capital cities of Eastern Europe. The presumed illegal competition of a digital platform for the supply of private transport services. In the case of Belgrade, the aim of the taxi-drivers, - about 250 of whom have crossed their arms - was, in particular, the platform Go:Car (and other illegal transporters). Go:Car is apparently an offshoot of UBER. Upshot of this protest is that Government Ministers have agreed to sit round a table with the taxi-driver and change the laws on transport, which could result in a general ban on offering journeys, through the internet, by unlicenced persons. Protests similar to this have been seen in other European cities from Barcelona to Paris, from Rome to Athens, as well as in other countries such as Croatia to Rumania, passing through Budapest and Bucarest. All down to UBER!