Share article:
Share article:

Uber denies plans to branch out to Leuven and Namur

© Belga

UPDATED: Uber, the ride-sharing service currently active in Brussels, has denied it is to extend to Leuven and Namur in the near future, Belga reports.

According to the company, it has no such plans. The mistake appears to have been caused by the two cities appearing on some language versions of the company’s website which lists the cities where Uber rides are available.

Uber came to Belgium in 2014, and its road has been rocky ever since, as far as politicians and licensed taxis are concerned, although the public has welcomed the service with open arms. According to Belga, the news that Uber intended to expand to Leuven, and the surrounding area including Haacht, Diest, Landen and Oud-Heverlee caused panic among the city’s taxi drivers. 

The news was greeted by a plea from environmental organisation Bond Beter Leefmilieu (BBL) calling on Uber to stock its new service with 100% electric vehicles, and to cooperate with public transport instead of competing.

BBL calls on the company to step in financially to help prospective drivers buy electric cars, as they have already done in London. The organisation also calls on local authorities in the areas concerned to adapt their local regulations “so that Uber does not have free rein to create air pollution and traffic jams”.

According to Laurien Spruyt, mobility expert at BBL, Uber threatens to undo positive moves already undertaken in other cities, including Leuven.

“We are working together with Antwerp, Leuven and Ghent on the greening of the taxi sector,” she said in a statement. “Uber threatens to undermine the efforts already made for better air quality. The company is able to specify which vehicles it allows into its app and which it does now. We are asking Uber to allow only electric vehicles, to ensure that their activities do not further damage the air quality in our cities.”

Alan Hope
The Brussels Times

Latest news

Anti-vaxxers demonstrate against Covid Safe Ticket in Brussels
Hundreds of supporters of the anti-vaxx movement gathered on Saturday outside the headquarters of the Pfizer pharmaceutical company to protest ...
Belgium’s investment funds total 260 billion euros in assets
Belgium’s funds industry grew by 5.3% (13 billion euros) in the second quarter of this year, bringing investment funds available to the public to ...
Brussels to Luxembourg by train in two hours soon possible
The fastest train ride between Brussels and Luxembourg currently takes almost three hours, but that could be slashed to about two hours thanks to the ...
Daily Covid infections up by almost 30% in Belgium
Between 6 and 12 October, an average of 2,438 people were infected with the Covid-19 virus every day, according to figures from the Sciensano public ...
Over 80,000 companies in Belgium non-compliant with anti-money laundering meassures
Over 80,000 companies and non-profits in Belgium are still not compliant with the Ultimate Business Owner (UBO) register, which is required of them ...
Increase in tax exemption for donations in Belgium fails to meet expectations
The increase from 45% to 60% in the tax exemption for donations, decided by the former federal government in June 2020, has cost Belgium more than ...
Sex workers in Belgium to get more social rights protection
The social rights of sex workers will soon be better protected in Belgium, Belga News Agency reports. The Council of Ministers has approved a draft ...
Belgian firms sent almost 266 billion euros to tax havens last year
Hundreds of Belgian firms sent close to 266 billion euros to tax havens last year, De Tijd reported on Saturday. Any Belgian individual or firm ...
Belgian investigator wins prestigious US prize
Olivier Hardy, an investigator with the federal police’s anti-terrorist unit in Brussels, DR3, received on Friday a "Top Cop" prize in Washington for ...
Pegasus Project: European Parliament awards journalism prize to investigation of use of spyware
The Daphne Caruana Prize for Journalism was awarded on Thursday to the journalists from the Pegasus Project coordinated by the Forbidden Stories ...
Belgians can now test their knowledge of driving rules and win prizes
The Walloon Road Safety Agency (AWSR) launched on Friday a quiz to allow the general public to test their knowledge of the highway code. Last year, ...
600 extras wanted for film about Belgian ‘Porn King’ and notorious Antwerp nightclub
A Belgian movie telling the story of a notorious Antwerp nightclub with connections to a Belgian 'Porn King' is looking for 600 extras at the end of ...