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Taxi Times International - August 2015 - Deutsch

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PEOPLE NISSAN’S CEO

PEOPLE NISSAN’S CEO PREDICTS THE END OF TAXIS IN 20 YEARS’ TIME Masaki Ogata now at the UITP’s helm. MASAKI OGATA TAKES OVER FROM PETER HENDY AS UITP PRESIDENT Masaki Ogata, the second non-European to be elected to this post, takes over from Sir Peter Hendy for a two-year period as President of the UITP, the international public transport association, based in Brussels. At the same time, Hendy left his post as Commissioner of the local taxi, private hire and public transport regulator Transport for London (TfL) to become Chairman of Network Rail, owner and operator of all Britain’s rail infrastructure. SPOKESMAN FINNISH TAXI ASSO- CIATION DEMANDS UBER-ACTION Sakari Lauriala, the Finnish Taxi Owner’s Association’s head of communications, would like his national authorities to step up its efforts and deal with unauthorised taxi traffic in the same way that authorities in other countries have dealt with contro versial ride-sharing services. Particularly Uber is in the line of fire of the association. Although in Finland an Uber-ride requires a transport license, many Uber activities go unchecked according to the association: “In the field and online it is apparent that there are drivers and entre- Sakari Lauriala (Finnish Taxi Owner’s Association) insists on action against Uber. Peter Hendy moves from TfL to Network Rail. Hendy played a significant part in making London a world leader in integrated transport – including taxis and private hire. Ogata is Executive Vice Chairman of JR East, a major Japanese train operator. Ogata says he is convinced that “public transport holds the key to many of the world’s major problems.” wf preneurs who don’t have a license or any taxi driving experience. They also don’t necessarily pay taxes or taxi operating insurance fees. If this kind of activity surfaces, it needs to be dealt with.” He suggests a model of action could be taken from Finland’s next-door neighbours. ”In Sweden, transport authorities recently declared UberPOP to be a taxi service that requires official permits for the company and its drivers. There the situation is being taken much more seriously,” says Lauriala. In March, the association sent the Police Board a request for action related to unauthorised taxi traffic. According to Lauriala, the association is still awaiting a reply. Police chief Risto Lammi confirmed the request, but while the Finnish Police Board says that overseeing traffic is their responsibility, Lammi emphasised that monitoring needs to be equal: one operator can’t be singled out. wf Carlos Ghosn, CEO of Renault-Nissan, predicts that – depending on being given the green light by the authorities - autonomous vehicles will replace taxis in our city’s streets in about twenty year’s time. “Taking into account the technical evolution in the development of autonomous vehicles, ending up with driverless cars, taxis will be a thing of the past in 20 years – at least taxis with drivers”, said the big boss of Renault/ Nissan. “What limits the development of the autonomous car today, is the regulator”, Ghosn said. “At the moment, when you drive a vehicle, legally you haven’t got the right to lift your hands from the steering wheel or even take your eyes off the road.” The regulation at present obliges the driver to be in total control of his vehicle at all times, even if this is driven by a computer. “These days the technical development of these cars progresses much faster than the acceptance of this development”, said the CEO. “In ten years’ time vehicles without drivers will be ready technically. But will those who make the regulations in this field, be ready in time?” Ghosn added that not only rules and regulations in this area need to be changed, but also the traffic signs along the roads and questions of insurance need to be addressed. He expects autonomous cars to start driving in limited areas on the edge of cities, where the road lay-out is simpler, speeds are lower and traffic jams are more frequent. wf PHOTO: Renault-Nissan, UITP, Wim Faber, Suomen Taksiliitto (STF) PHOTO: Winfried A. Seidel WITNESS OF TAXI HISTORY What you see here are the fittings of Germany’s oldest taxi, a Mercedes-Benz type 8 with a six-cylinder inline engine, 1988 ccm and 38 HP at 3,400 RPM. The car was in service for special rides at the VEB taxi circuit in Dresden until 1982. It then must have somehow got over to the West. It sat in a car park with engine damage for over 20 years until it was rediscovered with flat tyres under a thick layer of dust. Restoration of the vehicle allowed it to retain the traces of the past. Today it is displayed in the Automuseum Dr. Carl Benz where it is taken for nostalgic rides on special occasions. 4 Carlos Ghosn

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