British Columbia is continuing to take the long road to adopting Uber and ride-sharing companies in the province. Uber has warned B.C. that it risks getting left behind if it does not reach a decision on the market soon. The company’s chief advisor David Plouffe speaking at a Greater Vancouver Board of Trade luncheon Tuesday when he made the warning.
In fact, it is arguable that some of this “missing out” is already in motion. Vancouver, the largest-city Uber holdout in North America, voted to delay the company’s adoption for another year. One of the reasons cited was the city waiting on B.C. to make a decision on ride-sharing adoption.
At the luncheon, Plouffe said “It still blows my mind that when I get off a plane in Vancouver I can’t use Uber.”
The province has been vocal about Uber adoption, stating it plans to adopt the company. However, the government has promised a unique take on regulating the company and says it is still creating its “made-in-BC solution.”
Plouffe argues that B.C. should stop dragging its feet and help consumer prepare for future technologies that are on the horizon.
“This isn’t just about whether Uber or our competitor should be here and how that relates to taxis. Something big is happening and it relates to how our cities need to change and the autonomous future that’s going to come down the pipe.”
Uber is already making significant gains towards its own autonomous vehicle aspirations and the company does not even view the taxi industry as a major competitor. Instead, Plouffe adds that Uber is seeking to change transport in an environment where people use their personal vehicle less.
“We never talk about the taxi market. Our market is how people use their personal car,” he said.
“Just do it,” he said about B.C. adopting the company.
“Like anything else, just do it and you’ll see … people are going to be using cars less in big numbers and any of us that move people around have an opportunity to get those customers.”