Controversial issues between Uber and taxi drivers have came to life upon the entrance of Uber into the Turkish market in 2014. The public was actually excited about the arrival of Uber and this development with the expectation of receiving better quality of service, more secure and cost efficient rides, compared to local taxis.
In the year 2016, the Chartered Taxi-Drivers Society has instituted a court action against Uber before the Istanbul 10th Commercial Court, mainly claiming their activities cause unfair competition. This court action also received multiple intervening parties as plaintiffs during the trial, including well established Turkish Automobile/Taxi Associations.
After the long debates that took place during the trial, on the 7th session of the hearing dated October 16, 2019, the judge came to a verdict that the commercial activities of Uber constitutes unfair competition and concluded the prevention and prohibition of the unfair competition, blocking the access to the websites of and the UBER Mobil application and the publication of this decision before the three of the highest-circulation national newspapers after the finalization of this Court decision.
The local court decision was established in parallel with the expert report prepared for the file, particularly determining and acknowledging that the activities of Uber in Turkey constitute unfair competition. As the motivated decision will be written later on, the decision of the first instance court may be appealed before the Appellate Court within two weeks following the notification thereof to Uber.
Uber has recently ceased its activities in Turkey and now it is a certain issue of concern whether Uber will actually appeal this decision and decide to challenge the view of the local court on legality of its services in Turkey.