15 November 2016 Toomas Kivimägi: Confining on-demand ride sourcing to one form of economic activity is not justified

At today’s discussion of the bill regulating on-demand ride sourcing, the Economic Affairs Committee of the Riigikogu (Parliament of Estonia) arrived at common understanding that the bill would not establish the limit of 16,000 euro on turnover.Chairman of the Economic Affairs Committee Toomas Kivimägi said that, at today’s sitting, the Committee also reached an agreement on who would have the right to provide on-demand ride sourcing service. “The prevailing opinion was that the bill that is prepared for discussion in the factions would enable both natural and legal persons to provide on-demand ride sourcing service. In the case of legal persons, there would be a reservation that the service can be provided only by the authorised user of an automobile, and nobody else,” Kivimägi said.

“This position was also supported by the representative of the Ministry of Justice, who thought that restricting the possibility to provide on-demand ride sourcing service to only natural persons or self-employed persons would have no legal basis,” Kivimägi added.

In the opinion of Member of the Economic Affairs Committee Erki Savisaar, it would be better from the point of view of clarity if on-demand ride sourcing would be provided only by natural persons. “Ride sharing and taxi service should be clearly distinguishable services. The purpose of ride sharing is first of all putting your property to a better use, not providing this service as the main activity,” Savisaar said.

At the sitting of the Economic Affairs Committee, reporting obligation of on-demand ride sourcing through the Register of Economic Activities was discussed as an alternative; the earlier opinion was that reporting should take place through the Tax and Customs Board.

Representatives of the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communications and the Ministry of Justice participated in the discussion of the Bill on Amendments to the Public Transport Act (188 SE), initiated by 26 members of the Riigikogu.

Krishan Chand

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