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    Taxi drivers demonstrate against STIB for ‘promoting’ Uber

    Taxis in Brussels. Credit: Belga

    A group of taxi drivers are demonstrating outside the depot of Brussels’ public transport operator, to protest its alleged “promotion” of ride-hailing company Uber.

    At around 6:00 AM, up to 40 drivers were seen in the transport depot, located in the northern outskirts of the Belgian capital.

    The drivers were reacting to STIB’s annual report, released yesterday and in which Uber is cited as one of the transport alternatives available in the Belgian capital.

    “We are here to send out a clear message,” Sam Buchal, the president of the Belgian taxi union said. “To say that Uber is a model for the future is simply false.”

    While there is so far no indication they intend to block the departure of public transport vehicles, a representative of STIB warned the situation risked becoming “difficult” as it progressed.

    There may be some “difficulties when all of the colleagues arrive,” Françoise Ledune, spokesperson for STIB, said, referring to the arrival of employees of the public transport company.

    “Uber is not the future of mobility,” Bouchal said, warning that the taxi union would not back down from its position.

    “If STIB continues to promote a system like Uber, I think there will be more of us next time, and we will consider stronger action,” he said.

    The Brussels Times