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Lviv taxi. The light in the end of the tunnel?

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Added March 3, 2007

     At last the Department of transport and communication of Lviv's City council has recollected, that there is such kind of activity - a taxi. For the first time for two years (on March, 1st 2007)It have held assembly of carriers by a taxi, having invited on it representatives of Regional branch of Motor transportation inspection, tax inspection, representatives of the Ministry of Internal Affairs and GAI. Probably, problems in transportations by a taxi in city have so become aggravated also a situation in the market of these services became so uncontrolled, that  it becomes impossible to undertake nothing.

     However, after this assembly, those Lviv carriers, who possess corresponding Licenses, actually render services of transportation and receive payment for this services from passengers, have no less questions to representatives of imperous bodies and supervising structures, and "the light in the end of the tunnel" looks even more illusive for them. Let's understand, what carriers were present at assembly? Well, certainly, non-legal carriers, about which was so much spoken, were absent. As well as there were no appreciable representatives from the enterprises which have bought their own cars and provide services of transportations by own vehicles with attraction of hired drivers render, or leasing cars to their drivers with the status of businessmen. Except of several private businessmen-payers of the uniform tax who provide services by own cars on the basis of Licenses render, and managements of trade union "Motorist of Ukraine", there were many, up to 30 person, according to the presiding at assembly Head of Lviv’s City’s Council Department of Transport and Communication Nikolay Shkurgan, owners and representatives of a management of firms which have Licenses for the right of granting of services of passenger transportations by a taxi, consider itself as carriers, but do not use own vehicles for granting services. In overwhelming majority they simply have no own cars. Instead of it services are given by the "involved" machines. On the other hand, as has declared from a tribune of this assembly one of such directors who approved, that in five his enterprises works up to 1000 machines which drivers, even being lazy, earn " about three hundred dollars ", instead of being lazy - " all 500 ", it renders these drivers only information services and services on pretrip survey of the mechanic and the doctor. Wages, from its words, it to drivers at all does not total. As it does not accept the taxation of a wage fund. Taxes as a result it, by his words, he pays already 1000 grivnes (approximately 200$) in a month. And drivers do not hand over proceeds to firm, but hand over " a payment appropriate to firm ". As hte speech of this director has not caused objections in heads of firms present at assembly, and on the contrary, has caused an applause, it is possible to draw a conclusion that exactly such model of economic attitudes is the basic in their environment. Thus they, not receiving payment for transportation of passengers, and not employing taxi drivers, consider themselves as carriers. Here again it is necessary to understand.

     The term "carrier" is certain in the Law of Ukraine "About motor transport ". An automobile carrier - the physical or legal person who carries out on a commercial basis or for own means of transportation of passengers or cargoes vehicles; (Definition of the basic terms). It is not less precisely certain in the same place and the term " transportation of passengers ": service on transportation of passengers or cargoes - transportation of passengers or cargoes vehicles on contractual conditions with the customer of service for a payment.

     That is payment by the customer of service of transportation (passenger) to the subject to economic activities (firm) is an obligatory condition for activity of the last one according to the law can be named “transportations of passengers” and to apply the term "carrier" to such subject. As drivers are not employed in such "firms", and they do not hand over proceeds? It is impossible to consider these enterprises as carriers. In spite of the fact that they have Licenses for the right of transportations of passengers for a taxi, the fact of no-reception of proceeds by them for such transportations (which from a tribune of assembly has been sounded by director of such enterprise and has not been denied by other such directors) means only one - having the right for transportations of passengers they do not use this right. They receive proceeds not from passengers, but from drivers for the information on the potential client and for doubtful use by such drivers  license cards, which have been issued with"firms" on machines on which these drivers work, and carrying out of pretrip surveys. It is possible to consider such "firms" the intermediaries giving information services, and services on observance of License conditions, but in any way no carriers.

     And who then acts as a carrier for the passenger? Unequivocally the one who receives payment for transportation - not employed car driver. Which, in overwhelming majority of cases, has no status of the subject of economic activities, has no License, and does not pay any taxes in the budget. And at check by Motor transportation inspection, or the GAI is covered with the License card and a travelling leaf from "firm". That is conformity of economic activities of such carrier to norms of the legislation is not better at all, than at the driver of the private car without any documents on the right of transportations.

     So what requirements can be put to such carrier on ordering activity, on the tariff policy, or on the equipment of machines, in particular taximeters? It all over again needs to force to be passed in a legal field and to taxable schemes of economic activities. And "firms" to return back back License cards, which have been issued
on not own and not rented machines and with which they on its own behalf do not give services of transportations.

     But in fact, representatives of such "firms" at that assembly felt themselves most confidently. And they were going to create special working group which will cooperate with Lviv’s City Counsil Department of Transport and Communication. Will cooperate for putting in order the services of a taxi in Lviv? It looks more than doubtfully...

     Therefore speech of the Head of Department of Transport and Communication Nikolay Shkurgan who seems to be really anxious by problems of Lviv taxi, looked in many moments inappropriate for that audience. As it was addressed to carriers, but not to intermediaries who are just interested in carriers in fact to be in shadow.

     In particular he spoke about "wild" taxi-parkings which have flooded the city, and about taximeters which for a long time should be and which are not present in the machines involved in transportations on a taxi by such firms. But these questions concern first of all those who carries passengers and receives proceeds for services of transportation. Firms which representatives were present at assembly, do not do that another. And the decision of these questions for them - only superfluous and unnecessary expenses. And taximeters - also danger to receive a question from tax bodies: Who receives proceeds and where is taxes from it?

     Restriction of not supervised growth of quantity of machines with a recognition symbol of a taxi in city, as well as an external and technical condition of machines about what spoke hte Head, are important just for a carrier. As then he can work more effectively. And to the intermediary such growth is only on advantage. If it is more involved – it is better. Unimportantly old, or new machines. Finished or not. With professional drivers, or with green beginners at the wheel. Each machine gives monthly " payment appropriate to firm ".

     Nothing was said by The chief of Territorial Management of the Main State Inspection of Motor Transport Igor Zasadnyj about though any actions on stimulation of the equipment of machines by taximeters. Which should be there by definition. And which absence is rough infringement of License conditions. For what this inspection should punish the infringer. As well as the aspiration to divide legally rented by the enterprises cars and the machines where the license card "from the enterprise" simply covers illegal business on transportation was not showed.

     Nothing has been told by the representative of Tax inspection about interest to payment of taxes by carriers on a taxi. More truly to mass ignoring by them of it. That in general surprises on a background of double increase of the rate of the uniform tax (with 100 up to 200 grivnes) for transportations by a taxi the Lviv which was done by City Council since January, first, 2007. And, in such conditions will have no result, except stimulation of transition in shadow sector those few carriers, who such tax pay.

     As well as the requirement of the representative of GAI about annual carrying out of checkup of machines of a taxi though has not been supported by any promises of the control over these.

    The impression was made, that requirements of the law are  hold good for those not numerous carriers which agree to carry out them voluntary. Not interested in it persons can do themselves no trouble. Nothing will be changed. And as "group of support" will be created from last ones, there is no doubt whom and how they will support...

Wrote and translated by Anatoly Galaziuk

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Administrator, 10-03-2007, hits: 14385

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