New regulations could limit Didi’s taxi on-demand service in China’s leading cities

There’s problems in China for ride-sharing services soon after authorities in Beijing and Shanghai agreed to institute new regulations that could significantly reduce the driver pool for solutions like Didi Chuxing and Uber.

According to rules proposed in October that have now been adopted by each cities’ regulators, taxi on-demand services can only use drivers who are registered to live in either city. The regulations are not effective immediately, but they could deal a significant blow to Didi and Uber simply because appropriate now it is estimated that a considerable percentage of their fleet of cars are not registered in either city. The exact numbers are not known but the The New York Times reported that, for example, less than ten,000 of Didi’s 410,000 active drivers in Shanghai have permanent residency papers.

The system is identified as ‘hukou’ and it was instituted to prevent floods of folks coming to huge cities from rural locations. Despite that, numerous men and women who reside in Beijing and Shanghai do so without having papers. Since numerous of these unofficial citizens constitute the workforce behind on-demand services and taxi apps, the regulations could create a worrying predicament for Didi and other people.

Didi, which is in the process of completing the acquisition of Uber China, didn’t directly comment on the local rule when we asked. As an alternative, its response focused on other components of the ride-sharing regulations, which were amended with less aggressive terms this summer and now no longer consist of restrictions over the price and quality of automobiles.

“These rules are a considerable improvement towards a a lot more sensible and liberal framework. For instance, Beijing will introduce a 5-month-long transition period. Shanghai lowers the wheelbase requirement from 270 CM to 260 CM [enabling cheaper vehicles amongst ride-sharing fleets], while scrapping the initial proposal for emission floors. There will be adequate time for adaptation, and far more economy and environmental-friendly cars enter the service,” a Didi representative told TechCrunch.

The regulations have been amended multi times because their initial inception final year and, with Didi doubtless lobbying difficult and utilizing the contacts amongst its investor base, it remains to be seen if the nearby driver rules will come into force as they presently stand right now. Whilst, on the plus side, several of China’s smaller cities are adopting the suggestions much less aggressively than Beijing and Shanghai.

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China’s new cybersecurity law is negative news for company

The Chinese government has passed new cybersecurity regulations Nov. 7 that will put stringent new requirements on technology businesses operating in the country. The proposed Cybersecurity Law comes with information localization, surveillance, and actual-name requirements.

The regulation would call for instant messaging services and other net businesses to need customers to register with their real names and personal info, and to censor content material that is “prohibited.” Real name policies restrict anonymity and can encourage self-censorship for online communication.

The law also includes a requirement for information localization, which would force “critical info infrastructure operators” to store information inside China’s borders. According to Human Rights Watch, an advocacy organization that is opposing the legislation, the law does not contain a clear definition of infrastructure operators, and many businesses could be lumped into the definition.

“The law will successfully place China’s Internet organizations, and hundreds of millions of Internet customers, below greater state manage,” said Sophie Richardson, Human Rights Watch’s China director. HRW maintains that, while a lot of of the regulations are not new, most had been informal or only laid out in low-level law — and implementing the measures on a broader level will lead to stricter enforcement.

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In addition to the censorship measures, the law lives up to its name with some new specifications for cybersecurity.  Companies are necessary to report “network security incidents” to the government and inform shoppers of breaches, but the law also states that businesses must offer “technical support” to government agencies during investigations. “Technical support” is also not clearly defined, but could mean delivering encryption backdoors or other surveillance assistance to the government.

The Cybersecurity Law also criminalizes numerous categories of content material, which includes that which encourages “overthrowing the socialist program,” “fabricating or spreading false data to disturb economic order,” or “incit[ing] separatism or harm national unity.”

“If on the web speech and privacy are a bellwether of Beijing’s attitude toward peaceful criticism, absolutely everyone — including netizens in China and main international corporations — is now at danger,” stated Richardson. “This law’s passage means there are no protections for users against severe charges.”

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