Uber halted in the Philippines after 'misunderstanding'

The ride-hailing company reportedly disobeys regulators' orders and is forced to temporarily shutter its service.

Dara Kerr
Dara Kerr Former senior reporter
Dara Kerr was a senior reporter for CNET covering the on-demand economy and tech culture. She grew up in Colorado, went to school in New York City and can never remember how to pronounce gif.

The Uber app is currently unavailable in the Philippines.


Following a back-and-forth with regulators, Uber has temporarily shuttered its operations in the Philippines.

The country's transportation authority ordered Uber to suspend its service for one month on Monday. While the ride-hailing company followed orders on Tuesday, it was back up and running that same day. The regulators again told Uber to cease operations and again it complied, according to reports. 

The commotion began after the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) told Uber to stop accepting new driver applications until it better understood how to regulate the ride-hailing industry in the Philippines. Yet, Uber reportedly continued to accept applications.

The company apologized on Wednesday for what it called a "misunderstanding," Reuters reported.

"If there was a misunderstanding on our part relative to the LTFRB's intention with their prior order, then that was our mistake," Uber regional executive Michael Brown said, according to Reuters. "We're here to respect the regulator and in this case, if there was a misunderstanding, then I apologize."

Uber has experience ups and downs with regulators across the world. Besides the Philippines, the ride-hailing company has been forced to suspend operations from Denmark to Taiwan to Spain. In some countries it's been able to roll its service back out, but in some it remains shuttered.

Uber didn't immediately respond to request for comment.

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