South Australia has become the third Australian jurisdiction to regulate ridesharing with Uber set to be legal in the state from July.
Announced by Premier Jay Weatherill and transport minister Stephen Mullighan on Tuesday, the state government will be providing a compensation package for the taxi industry, including a $30,000 payment for each taxi licence and $50 per week in payments for a maximum of 11 months.
This will be paid for via a $1 levy per ride.
The changes are in response to an independent review of the taxi industry and were approved by Cabinet on Monday.
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Currently the Uber Black limousine service is the only Uber offering available in South Australia.
The ACT became the first Australia jurisdiction to regulate ridesharing in September last year, in turn reducing taxi licence fees by 75%.
New South Wales followed next in December, giving a $20,000 compensation fee to nearly 6000 taxi plate owners.
GoCatch, the first Australian ridesharing service, has signalled its intention to launch in South Australia following the news.
“We look forward to expanding our service to Adelaide and other major Australian cities in which legislative changes support the introduction of local ridesharing services,” GoCatch CEO Ned Moorfield says.
“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.”
Taxi app and mobile payment provide ingogo has also welcomed the state government’s announcement.
“With the legislation of taxi applications, travellers and businesses in Adelaide can enjoy the same benefits of disruptive technology as people in Australia’s other capital cities,” ingogo CEO Hamish Petrie says.
“We’re excited to now have the ability to enhance the taxi driver experience via our booking app, which will also provide consumers with the final piece of the puzzle.”