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Taxi App Uber Could Go Out Of Business In Hungary After Tax Authority Sting


An investigation conducted by the National Tax and Customs Administration has found that all Uber drivers examined broke tax regulations, and hefty fines suggest that the taxi app could go out of business in Hungary.

During the first series of checks by tax officers disguised as passengers, conducted in May, the tax authority found that none of the tested drivers had a VAT number or produced an invoice. Drivers failed to install taxi meters in their cars and there were no blank receipts or invoices provided. The drivers, who were found to offer the service in a “business-like” manner, had  neither a taxi licence or a certificate of medical condition. Those who were found to break the rules may now be hit by fines up to HUF 200 000 and the tax authority said that it will carry out further checks on every single Uber driver.

Authorities claim that the Dutch-registered company is providing its taxi service in Hungary without contributing to the country’s tax revenue and lacking appropriate permits. The cabinet’s strive to regulate the operation of mobile taxi apps could effectively put services such as Uber out of business.

Uber, branded the world’s most valuable startup, launched its service in Budapest in November 2014. The traditional, regulated taxi industry feared that the appearance of the service, offering rides at lower rates than the uniform Budapest tariff, could put them out of business.