Licensed taxi drivers staged another protest against Uber Monday, but they certainly lost the public relations battle.
While taxi drivers were throwing eggs at their colleagues who chose to work, Uber offered Valley residents a free ride of up to 15,000 colons for the day.
“We know that San Jose is part of a cosmopolitan country with vision, characterized by a strong desire to promote technological progress and increased mobility options that improve our quality of life. Uber contributes and is part of this positive change in our Costa Rica.”
The government fielded 300 Fuerza Pública officers to work with traffic police Monday morning. Officers reported unspecified problems in Zapote, Parque de la Paz and San Pedro.
President Luis Guillermo Solís held a press conference in which he acknowledged that Uber was
working illegally in the country. But a call center that the firm is setting up is legal, he emphasized. Casa Presidencial said that police had been told to take action when drivers are found offering transport services illegally. But so far no arrests have been announced.
Taxi drivers delivered a note to Casa Presidencial once again asking that the Internet services that Uber uses to obtain customers be blocked. Said Casa Presidencial:
The government encourages technological innovations that benefit consumers and favors all investments made in Costa Rica and guarantees its operation, provided they comply with national legislation. However, Uber transport services offered in the country are outside the law.
For that reason, any related activity that facilitates operation of Uber, although it may be technically legal, will be thoroughly investigated, to prevent the operation of a business that is illegal under the laws of the country.
Taxi drivers ended their six-hour protest about noon. They promised another protest Monday.