Taxi threaten strike against decree increasing licenses, government takes step back

The “Asset and investments” law decree introduces up to 20% more licenses for some Municipalities through a competition open to new operators. After the protests, excluding the hypothesis of cumulation of definitive licenses for the same subject. The unions had spoken of a “Trojan horse” measure. Enterprise Minister Urso: “Requests accepted”

After the protests of the taxi drivers, who threatened to strike against the government decree which aims to increase the licenses for some municipalities, the executive corrected the shot (READ ALL THE PROVISIONS). At a press conference, Enterprises Minister Adolfo Urso announced that the requests had been accepted: unlike what was contained in the draft, the hypothesis of cumulation of definitive licenses held by the same subject was excluded in the Asset decree. The extraordinary competition to obtain them will therefore be open to new operators. Furthermore, today 7 August, a discussion table was held at the Ministry of Made in Italy with the trade union representatives of the category.

What does the decree provide?

As far as definitive licenses are concerned, the decree approved in the CDM (with the amendments following the protests of the drivers) will allow metropolitan cities, capitals and Municipalities hosting international airports to announce an extraordinary competition open to new operators, up to an increase of 20 % compared to existing licenses. In this case, the combination opposed by taxi drivers would thus fall. Another object of dispute is that of temporary licenses. Here the provision provides for the release by the Municipalities, on an experimental basis, free of charge or against payment, of additional licenses to deal with an extraordinary increase in demand linked to major events, such as the Jubilee, or to tourist flows. These licenses will have a duration not exceeding twelve months, which may be extended up to a maximum period of 24 months. The decree indicates that they can only be issued to individuals who already hold licences, who can entrust them to third parties, even for consideration, or manage them on their own.

Urso: “Simplify and accelerate licenses”

“For taxis we have to respond to an increase in the market due to the increase in the flow of tourists, international traffic and some extraordinary events starting from the 2025 jubilee and then followed by Expo Roma 2030. Extraordinary events that add up to the growth of international tourism in our This is why we have planned a package of measures that follow the principle of simplification, red tape and acceleration for the issuance of new licenses with legal certainty”. This was stated by the Minister of Enterprise Adolfo Urso in the press conference after the CDM illustrating the rules on taxis. The first, he explained, simplifies “the double guide: it will only be possible to do it with a communication”.

Unica CGIL: “For us it is a Trojan horse”

“This decree made in this way must not be converted into law. A general strike and mobilization will be our response”: Unica CGIL had announced in a note. “The laws in force already allow the mayors to intervene on the workforce as well as to improve and make services more efficient. Only CGIL will be neither in partnership nor in colluding with governments and ministers who want to destroy the public service”, reads the union’s note, which underlines how “at the table on taxis at Mimit two ministers are absent without justifiability. Instead of tackling and working to solve the structural problems of scheduled public transport, they find the time and commit state apparatuses to dismantle law 21/92”, continues the union . “The real goal is only to dismantle the public taxi service, to provide cars and drivers at the service of the new illegal hiring managed by multinationals”, concludes Unica CGIL. Carlo di Alessandro, president of Federtaxi Cisal, echoes her: “Today the cumulation of licenses for taxi drivers is effectively imposed and they offer it to us as a gift. We don’t want gifts. For us it is a Trojan horse and we are against it”. And he continues: “This triggers speculation mechanisms that we do not intend to endorse. If they want to give us compensation, they give us the reduced VAT for the purchase of the cars, the tax credit for the purchase of fuel, the recognition of occupational diseases and of the strenuous work. We are available if it were necessary to implement the service, it being understood that the critical issues are due to the shortcomings of scheduled public transport”, he explains, specifying at the same time that he “is not against the whole package”.

Abstainers: “Intolerable strike”

The Assoutenti association had defined the strike threatened by the taxi drivers as “absurd and intolerable”, in the light of the fact “that the provisions contained in the decree are to the almost exclusive advantage of the taxi drivers”. The consumer protection association said it was ready to bring criminal charges against drivers of white cars should they carry out protests and strikes to the detriment of users. “It is not clear who the taxi organizations are protesting against, nor why the CGIL, which is supposed to defend desperate precarious workers, defends the privileges of taxi drivers”, explained the president Furio Truzzi. “The rules studied by the Government will in fact enrich taxi drivers, opening a new business through the issue of additional licenses to those who already have one, licenses that taxi drivers will be able to manage for a fee, thus opening a new profitable market in their favour. On the front of consumers, on the other hand, the decree does not seem to contain anything new, as the increase in licenses is already a possibility available to the municipalities”.

Unc: “Another spot measure”

“On taxis we are faced with another spot provision of the Government” was the comment by Massimiliano Dona, president of the National Consumer Union. “We reserve the right, of course, to express a final judgment when we have a text available, but judging by what has emerged so far, taxis are either useless things or a recycling of old things. Already today the Municipalities and the Regions can increase the licenses at will, a pity that, being hostages of the taxi drivers, they never do it. In short, an increase that will remain on paper, or, even worse, from now on will also have a ceiling of 20 percent which currently does not exist” continues Dona. “As for the additional temporary taxi licenses to deal with an extraordinary increase in demand, is already foreseen since the first Bersani sheet, i.e. since 2006, with the decree law 4 July 2006, n. 223, converted by law 4 August 2006, n. 248, where since then it was foreseen, and still is, that the Municipalities can issue temporary authorization titles to deal with extraordinary events. Instead, what would be needed is to eliminate the territorial constraints, so that both taxi drivers and NCCs can carry out the service wherever they want, or to eliminate the absurd obligation for NCCs to return to the garage which still partially remains despite a ruling by the Consulta,” he adds. Dona. “In short, the only real novelty of the decree under discussion today, on the consumer side – concludes Dona with regard to the measures against ‘expensive flights’ – is the principle that algorithms are not always lawful, a very important innovation, which however, it risks never being applied, given that the ban will only come into effect for prices triple the average ones and only for the islands, in short, never!” concludes Dona.