Uber’s complaint to the European Commission over French laws aimed at regulating the ride-sharing company has stalled. The paperwork was completed this summer, yet the two-year-old case was again not on the College of Commissioner’s agenda Wednesday.
More and more people are asking, ‘what is holding the Commission back?’ Especially since European Commissioner for Internal Market Elżbieta Bieńkowska confirmed Tuesday the case was legally ready.
“We are ready to go with this,” she said at a conference in Brussels. The first step in launching an infringement procedure, in theory, would be to send a letter of formal notice to the country.
“We are still discussing it internally, but I will do my best to do this as soon as possible.”
Uber first filed a complaint to the Commission in November of 2014 over French legislation, which limited Uber drivers’ use of geo-location tools to find customers, among other things.
A second complaint has since been filed and the two are being handled together.
The company claims the French law favors regular taxis. It wants Brussels to force France to change the rule, saying the current arrangement breaches a number of EU laws.
Uber also filed three additional complaints against Germany, Hungary and Spain over restrictive laws limiting the service’s use.
Bieńkowska acknowledged that it was “not easy” for her to speak publicly about the Uber complaint, but that she was determined the Commission should move forward. European Commissioner for Transport Violeta Bulc is taking the lead on the file and has tried to move it forward too.
Still, multiple Commission sources told POLITICO the file has not even hit the pre-College stage of consultation among commissioners’ chiefs-of-staff.
Bulc’s office declined to comment.
The status of the complaint was discussed Tuesday at a meeting between Uber Chief Executive Travis Kalanick and Commission Digital Vice President Andrus Ansip, according to a Commission source.
Legal questions over the EU’s competency over transportation laws had stalled discussions, but those issues have been resolved, the source said.
Uber declined to comment on the record.
“There are no deadlines for assessing complaints — obviously we try to handle all complaints as fast as possible, but complex matters require careful examination,” said Commission spokesperson Lucia Caudet.
Nicholas Hirst contributed reporting to this article.