Drivers brace for Egyptian ride-hailing laws | 5/23/2018 | Staff
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New legislation regulating ride-hailing services in Egypt may have been welcomed by Uber and competitor Careem, but some behind the wheel fear they could be driven out of business.

After various twists and turns, including a ban on ride-sharing as recently as March, Egyptian lawmakers passed a bill in early May, pending approval by President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi.

Laws - Drivers - Pounds - Euros - Licence

The laws will require drivers to pay 3,000 Egyptian pounds ($170, 140 euros) for a special licence, a huge outlay in a country where the average monthly salary is around $200 and many people take multiple jobs to make ends meet.

"It is too much for an Egyptian," says Khaled, who has been bolstering earnings from teaching Arabic by working for Uber these past few months.

Law - Uber - Percent - Client - Payment

"As soon as the law is implemented, I will leave Uber," he adds, since 20 percent of each client's payment goes to the firm, making it hard to turn a profit.

Another driver, Mohamed, 27, bought a car to work for the firm, so may invest in the licence, but only if Uber guarantees earnings and provides support.

Fees - Security - Job - Taxi - Driver

"If I have to pay fees without having the security of a normal job, I might as well be a taxi driver," he says.

But the legislation has been given the thumbs up by the ride-hailing firms, with Uber Egypt managing director Abdellatif Waked describing it as a "historic step", after years of legal uncertainty.

Way - Investment - Creation - Jobs - Uber

He says it paves the way for "increased investment, the creation of many jobs" and further Uber expansion in Egypt.

'Strong signal'

Ramy - Kato - Egypt - Director - UAE

For Ramy Kato, Egypt managing director for UAE firm Careem, the new bill "sends out...
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