Uber given two-month extension to London licence

Taxi-hailing app Uber has been granted a two-month extension to operate in London as the company continues to battle with transport bosses for a full licence.

Transport for London (TfL) announced its decision this morning, with Uber having asked for a new five-year licence.

But City Hall has been concerned over issues around passenger safety.TfL said the app-based firm must now meet new conditions to "ensure passenger safety".

The transport body has requested that the firm provides "additional material" ahead of any future licensing application.

In June 2018, Uber was granted a 15-month licence by a judge after it appealed against a TfL decision not to renew its licence over safety concerns.This was due to expire on Wednesday.

A TfL spokesman said: "Uber London Limited has been granted a two-month private hire operator licence to allow for scrutiny of additional information that we are requesting ahead of consideration of any potential further licensing application."

Jamie Heywood, Uber's regional general manager for northern and eastern Europe, said: "TfL's recognition of our improved culture and governance reflects the progress we have made in London.

"We will continue to work closely with TfL and provide any additional requested information."

He said that over the past two years the firm has added a range of new safety features to its app.

"We will keep listening, learning and improving to provide the best service while being a trusted partner to London," Mr Heywood added.

The GMB union said Uber has had "more chances than a game of Monopoly" and claimed TfL had "simply kicked the can down the road".

It added: "A two-month licence extension is no good for anyone. It leaves uncertainty for drivers and passengers, meanwhile Uber still operates an unsafe model on the streets of London."