Your Chamber has banged on over the years about the failings of our Taxi Service. We do this because our members constantly raise issues on the reliability and delivery of the service. The Chamber has also received complaints from visiting business people and tourists as well as from the wider public.
The fact remains that our taxi service is, very often, the first impression of Gibraltar that potential investors, business people and tourists arriving will experience.
What is really extraordinary is what our Minister for Transport said in Parliament last October “Government is not happy with Taxi service”.
“There are either no taxis at the ranks or they are often not available when a taxi is ordered by ‘phone, at whatever time of the day or night.” a Chamber member told B2B. B2B researched a similar sized city to Gibraltar in the UK:
We used a population size of -/+ 40,000 as Gibraltar has 30,000 residents plus +/-10,000 frontier works and we did not even include the number of cruise passengers or tourists. (Estimated to be 429,446 for 2017, and frontier tourists of +/- 2,000,000 per annum)
We were told this city has 300 hackney carriage licenses and 250 private hire vehicles licensees.
In contrast, the number of taxi licenses in Gibraltar has remained static at 112 since the frontier re-opened in 1985. Meanwhile GDP has risen from £152m* in 1988 to a massive £1.63* Billion in 2014:
Despite repeated assurances over the years by the GTA that the City Service would improve, to date, the City Taxi Service is still not fit for purpose. Gibraltar cannot afford to fall at the first hurdle and put the interests of a few before those of Gibraltar at large.
It is incumbent on the present Government to take all and any necessary measures to dramatically improve the taxi service at all locations around Gibraltar throughout the year and whether cruise liners are calling in port or not.
We therefore urge our Government to take whatever action is necessary to remedy this situation.