Bulgarian court upholds 200 000 leva fine on Uber companies

The Supreme Administrative Court upheld on September 28 the fine of 200 000 leva (about 102 000 euro) imposed in July by the Competition Protection Commission (CPC) on two companies offering Uber taxi and car-sharing services.

The court ordered the immediate execution of the CPC decision, dismissing an application by the two companies.

On July 16 2015, the CPC imposed four fines totalling 200 000 leva on the two companies, commission spokesperson Mario Gavrilov said at the time.

In an interview with public broadcaster Bulgarian National Television, Gavrilov said that the CPC held that the Uber service was identical to that of taxi services, but suppliers circumvented tax laws, did not pay licence fees, did not account for their revenue and so created an uncompetitive environment in the market.

“We imposed two fines on the two companies carrying out the Uber service in Bulgaria…on the one hand, we imposed a fine of 50 000 leva for violating provisions of the Competition Protection Act. They said that they were not performing such but after a thorough analysis, we found that they were doing just that, first providing transport for a fee and beyond that providing a journey on a route defined by the user,” Gavrilov said.

The Supreme Administrative Court dismissed the application to halt the execution of the fine saying that such suspension was permissible only if there was proof by the applicant of significant or irreparable damages.

According to the court, there were no obstacles to the companies sanctioned by the CPC to implement their planned investments in the country in accordance with national legislation.



The Sofia Globe staff

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