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Uber, Bolt secure licenses in South Africa

South Africa's landmark decision to grant operating licenses to ride-hailing services like Uber and Bolt

South Africa has taken a major step in recognizing and regulating the gig economy by granting ride-hailing companies Uber and Bolt operating licenses.

President Cyril Ramaphosa signed an amendment to the National Land Transport Act, ending over a decade of regulatory uncertainty for these platforms. This decision legitimizes their operations, putting them on par with traditional taxi services while also introducing stricter safety regulations overseen by the transport minister.

For Uber and Bolt, this implies a more stable operating environment, increased investor confidence, and a wider reach into the South African market. Their drivers can now expect improved working conditions and greater job security.

While hailed as a victory for the gig economy, this move is not without challenges. Companies like Bolt have faced backlash, recently suspending over 6,000 drivers in South Africa over alleged misconduct, a move drivers claim is unfair targeting. Thus, balancing driver satisfaction with safety standards will be crucial going forward.