Uber to remain in Quebec for now

Published: October 17, 2017

Updated: July 24, 2018

Author: Luke Jones

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US-based ride-sharing giant Uber appears to be backing down on its threat to leave the Quebec market and says it will stick around, at least for now.

The company announced Friday it will remain in the province and will continue to seek a resolution with the transport minister over a regulatory dispute.

“We recognize there is an opportunity to establish a constructive dialogue aimed at finding a lasting solution for riders and drivers in Quebec,” Uber Quebec general manager Jean-Nicolas Guillemette said in a statement.

Quebec announced in September it will renew the pilot program that allowed Uber to operate in the province for one-year. The extension would give the company another year, but the government said it was adding new stipulations to the terms of the program.

In response, Lessard says Uber drivers must now have a police background check. This is different to the current system were checks are performed by a private third-party found by Uber. Additionally, drivers must now undergo 35 hours of training, an increase from 20 hours.

Uber disagreed with the terms of the new arrangement and said it would be forced to leave Quebec. However, the company seems to have changed its mind and will continue to negotiate with the government.

Transport Minister Andre Fortin indicated the province will not back down from its changes.

“This is a matter of fairness for all market partners and for the safety of users,” Fortin said in a statement. “I also intend to work with our partners to develop innovative solutions to provide Quebec users with a modern industry that meets their needs.”