Taxi Drivers Strike in Chaozhou

01:48 Nov 28 2008 Chaozhou China

From BBC:

Taxi drivers have gone on strike in the southern city of Chaozhou, the latest in a wave of protests across China.

Drivers say they are angry that nothing has been done about unlicensed cabs operating in their city.

The industrial action follows strikes in other cities that turned violent before officials bowed to irate drivers' demands.

Earlier this week, about 100 drivers threw bricks at unlicensed taxis in the province capital Guangzhou.

Drivers elsewhere in China have taken similar action this month, damaging at least 20 vehicles, including three police cars, in Chongqing and attacking 15 cars in Sanya.

In each case, the complaints were the same - unlicensed competition, high fuel prices and rising rental fees at a time when the economy is slowing.

The mayor of Chongqing, China's fourth largest city, has taken the unusual step of allowing live television coverage of his negotiations with the strikers.

The BBC's Chris Hogg in Shanghai says the protests have so far been low level instances of social unrest, but it appears that concessions won by the drivers in Chongqing earlier this month have emboldened those in other cities.

The proliferation of mobile phones and the internet has meant that information about protests can spread much faster than in the past and protests are easier to organise, says our correspondent.

China's leaders have said the prospect of increased social unrest is their "top concern" as the economy slows.

From The China:

Scores of taxi drivers went on strike in Chaozhou, Guangdong province, on Friday following hundreds of others who stopped work on Thursday, an employee surnamed Lin with the Jinqi Taxi Co told China Daily.

The initial protest, in which drivers demanded a limit on the number of taxis working in the city, ended with talks on Thursday between drivers’ representatives and Mayor Tang Xikun.

No violence was reported.

The municipal publicity department confirmed on Thursday that talks had taken place, but on Friday, the government information department declined to comment on the issue, and calls to the communications bureau went unanswered.

The strikes come less than two weeks after hundreds of Chaozhou taxi drivers took to the streets on Nov 16, demanding a halt to the issuing of new taxi licenses. The city currently has more than 800 licensed taxis.

Local authorities promised not to issue any new licenses over the next two years, and also to slow down the replacement of old taxis, Lin said.

The latest strike was triggered by media reports that the communications bureau was planning to issue new licenses to buses for the lucrative Chaozhou to Shantou route, although this has not been officially confirmed, Lin said.

Following a strike by taxi drivers in Shantou last week, authorities there cracked down on unlicensed operators, which authorized drivers have said as a serious threat to their business.

The Chaozhou and Shantou strikes follow similar protests staged recently in Chongqing and Sanya, Hainan province.
Credibility: UP DOWN 0

Additional Reports

Transport Drivers in Maoming City, Guangdong Strike

21:13 Apr 11, 2011

茂名市 Guangdong, 0 Kms

Construction Workers Protest in Front of Labor Bureau in Maoming City, Guangdong

00:00 May 23, 2011

Maoming City, Guangdong Province, 0 Kms

Workers Protest Against Sinopec

11:22 Jun 09, 2010

广东省茂名市双山四路9号大院, 0.87 Kms

Retired Petrochemical Workers in Maoming, Guangdong Protest Over Pensions

00:00 Jan 06, 2004

Maonan District,Maoming City,Guangdong Province, 2.31 Kms

Construction Workers Protest in Huazhou, Maoming, Guangdong

19:14 Jun 09, 2012

Huazhou, Maoming, Guangdong, China, 29.54 Kms