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Taxi drivers return to work in Chenzhou

MOST striking taxi drivers in a Hunan Province city have resumed work after the government promised to deal with their complaints of illegal competition.

Cabs were seen running in Chenzhou, and the municipal government said almost 70 percent of the city's 1,000 licensed cabbies were taking passengers as of 10pm on Friday. The government said officials were still trying to persuade the remaining 300-odd drivers to return to work as soon as possible.

No gatherings of striking drivers were seen on Friday.

Hundreds of cabbies went on strike the day before to protest illegal competition from handicapped people who use their own vehicles to carry passengers for profit without approval by authorities or paying any fees.

Many returned to work on Thursday afternoon after Chenzhou Mayor Xiang Lili promised to crack down on the illegal business during a meeting with representatives of the striking drivers.

An estimated 180 handicapped people earn money by carrying passengers.

The cabbies also complained about high rental fees charged by taxi companies and authorities.

A crackdown against unlicensed drivers was launched on Thursday to stamp out all illegal transport business in the city.

The city government said an investigation team would start looking into administration fees for taxis.

China has seen a series of taxi driver strikes during the past year.


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