Following a ruling by a judge that Uber’s ride hailing services in Colombia is in violation of competition rules, Colombia has ordered Uber to cease its ride-hailing operations in the country.
The court order came in the wake of a lawsuit filed by COTECH SA against against Uber alleging that the U.S. company had the country’s market rules.
Uber has more than 2.3 million active users in Colombia and around 88,000 driver partners.
Interestingly, while Colombia’s Technology Ministry deems ride-hailing apps as legal the country’s transport authorities hold a diametrically opposite view and state they are against the law.
In a statement the SIC said Uber generated “a significant advantage in the market” by rendering transport services for individuals via its application.
Following its analysis, the SIC ordered Uber’s ride-hailing services “through the use of the Uber application to cease immediately.”
The order applies to Uber, Uber X and Uber VAN.
In its statement, Uber said it rejects the ruling and has immediately filed an appealed against it.
“This decision reflects an act of censorship and infringes on the Inter American Convention on Human Rights, which has already condemned attempts to block Uber for violating the neutrality of the web, liberty of expression and freedom of internet,” said Uber in a statement.
Incidentally, the ruling will not have a bearing on Uber’s other services such as Uber Eats.
In August 2019, Uber was levied a fine of more than $629,000 for obstructing an administrative visit and failing to comply with SIC orders.