By Chris King • 23 September 2022 • 19:59
Image of a taxi sign.
Credit: Caron Badkin/Shutterstock.com
With taxi drivers throughout Andalucia starting their planned strike action this evening, Friday, September 23, a statement released by the sector informed users that there will be three stoppages at the main transport hubs in Malaga city – airport, port, and train and bus stations.
The unions representing the taxi drivers called the strike which begins today at 7 pm and runs until 7am next Monday 26. They are protesting against the government’s perceived lack of control over VTCs in Andalucia.
Essential services will be covered in Malaga between 7pm and 9pm this evening. On Saturday 24, and Sunday 25, they will operate between 11am and 1pm. During the rest of the time, until Monday morning, a fleet of only 205 vehicles will cover Malaga airport.
This is a minimised taxi fleet due to the fact that the majority of drivers are participating in the demonstrations in San Telmo, Sevilla. In the statement, the taxi drivers apologised “for all the trouble we may cause during these days”. They specified that taxis for people with reduced mobility will continue to be available, as part of the essential services.
Speaking on Thursday, September 22, Miguel Angel Martin, president of the Costa del Sol Taxi Confederation, summarised the requests of the sector. They want to regulate deferred pre-contracting, to include a time of 15 or 30 minutes before performing the service.
A ratio of 1 VTC vehicle for every 30 taxi licences is also demanded. As he pointed out, at the moment this ratio in Malaga: “is 1/1, above 2,000 vehicles of each type, but they also come to operate from other autonomous communities, there is no control”.
Martin assured that the Junta de Andalucia has not advanced the draft of the decree that should come into force on Saturday, October 1. That is the date on which the so-called Abalos decree is scheduled to be put into operation, which will regulate VTCs in Spain.
“First, Marifran Carazo, the Minister of Transport, met with us and told us that there would be pre -contracting. That same afternoon, with other leaders, they told us that neither the pre-contracting nor the ratio would be like that. It is a shame that they defend companies that do not pay their taxes in Spain”, denounced Martin.
“They are going to destroy a public service that feeds more than 10,000 families in Andalucia”, he stressed.
Salaried taxi drivers though have denounced not having a voice in this entire process, despite the fact that they are “an essential part of the sector”. They argued that they should be kept informed by one of the associations as to how the conflict is developing with the Board.
Despite this, they have supported the strike action “without showing any weakness to the employers of the sector in defence of public services”, as reported by malagahoy.es.
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Originally from Wales, Chris spent years on the Costa del Sol before moving to the Algarve where he is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news.
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