As of 1 July UberX, and other app-based ride sharing services, will be able to legally operate in South Australia.
In response to the impact this will have on the taxi industry, an “assistance package” has been put together by the Government, consisting of a $30,000 payment per taxi licence, $50 a week (for a maximum of 11 months) payment for licence lessees, and no new taxi licences to be issued for at least five years.
A $1 fee on all metropolitan trips will be funding the assistance package. South Australia currently has 1,137 taxi licences in operation.
The RAA welcomed the announcement:
— Matthew Pantelis (@MatthewPantelis) April 12, 2016
Black, Uber’s service using licensed chauffers, has been the only app based ride-sharing option available in South Australia to date.
The CEO of GoCatch, who recently launched an Uber rival GoCar in Sydney, also welcomed the changes as the service looks to expand.
“We welcome today’s announcement by the South Australian government and support their efforts to provide access to more flexible, quality and cost-effective travel options. This move will enable greater choice and convenience for passengers looking to get from A to B and create new opportunities for drivers to supplement their income,” he said.
“We are also eager to continue supporting South Australian taxi drivers. By offering both options to passengers, we will create more opportunities for both our taxi and ridesharing drivers in the long run.”
The one party that doesn’t seem to be enthusiastic about the decision is Uber itself, telling Gizmodo “red tape” may stop it from operating in the state altogether.