Liberalisation without exploitation of the taxi sector in Luxembourg

Train, tram, bus, bicycle, walking, carpooling, or private car: the future mobility mix encompasses various elements. However, in many cities around the world, there is still another important element that remains marginal in Luxembourg: cabs. The primary users of cabs in Luxembourg are foreign business executives who typically have limited time or unaware tourists. They are often surprised to pay 45 euros for a 10-minute ride between the airport and the city, which is nearly 5 euros per kilometre. Only half that amount is charged in Frankfurt, which is also a costly city.

Following the failure of the cab sector reform in 2016, Minister of Mobility François Bausch has prepared a new reform for 2021. For instance, the country’s division into six cab zones is expected to be abolished. This would allow every cab to transport passengers anywhere in the country rather than limiting them to their licensed zone. Additionally, there was a plan to issue unlimited cab licenses, which would have enabled anyone to enter the cab industry. Furthermore, the legalization of chauffeur-driven rental cars was considered, allowing ride-hailing platforms like Uber or Bolt to offer their services in Luxembourg. These measures would undoubtedly lead to a significant decrease in fares.

However, the powerful opposition from the cab lobby quickly ended this proposed legislation. The cab lobby argues that the high wages in Luxembourg are a result of the high costs borne by drivers. However, it must be noted that a cab in Luxembourg spends most of its time waiting for the next customer. The lost earnings during this waiting time must be compensated through higher fares. Lower fares would attract more passengers, allowing drivers to earn more money. Another argument raised is that cabs would primarily operate within the city without the division into zones. Nonetheless, it should be noted that cabs currently focus mainly on the airport and city centre. With an appealing fare structure, there would be a corresponding demand for cabs in the southern or northern regions.

As Young Democrats, we call for the liberalization of the cab sector. There should only be one zone, unlimited cab licenses, and ride-hailing platforms should be allowed to offer their services in Luxembourg. Of course, this should not result in the exploitation of cab drivers. They should receive health insurance coverage and contribute to the retirement fund. This reform would be a crucial element of tomorrow’s mobility strategy.



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