Mainland ride-hailing giant Didi Chuxing and Hong Kong transport firms Kwoon Chung Bus and Sun Bus are seeking to enter the city's premium taxi market while the trade itself is boycotting the government's plan to start franchised services, according to sources.
Industry players also warned that a proposed five-year trial scheme to provide a better service for the public, subject to Legislative Council approval, might never take off due to insufficient support from lawmakers.
The taxi trade is also lobbying chief executive-elect Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor to scrap it.
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Sources said the sector had already secured the support of the city's three big political parties – the Democratic Party, Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong (DAB) and Liberal Party – to vote down the scheme. DAB lawmaker Ben Chan Han-bun and the Liberal Party's Frankie Yick Chi-ming have openly thrown their support behind the taxi trade.
"Our assessment is that the franchised taxi scheme won't get through Legco," one source said. "Also, it is said that current transport chief Anthony Cheung Bing-leung won't stay on, so his successor may have a change of mind. We are also seeking a meeting with Carrie Lam."