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SADIQ KHAN: ‘I have lobbied the Treasury for specific support for London’s taxi and PHV industries’

Updated: Jan 22, 2022

Image credits: Greater London Authority (Sadiq Khan) / UnSplash (Taxi)

‘I have lobbied the Treasury for specific support for London’s taxi and private hire industries,’ says Mayor of London.

The comments come after the Mayor was challenged on what his plans would be to help taxi drivers struggling to find a licensed cab to work in.

According to Transport for London (TfL) data, the number of taxis made available to licensed cabbies to drive in the capital has fallen to just 14,362 leaving some of the 19,812 licensed drivers unable to source a vehicle to drive.

Assembly Member, Keith Prince, asked the Mayor whether he has a plan to provide assistance to those taxi drivers who are unable to source vehicles due to the decrease in the taxi fleet.

Sadiq Khan, Mayor of London, responded: “I have provided £42million to support London’s taxi trade in its uptake of cleaner vehicles. I am very proud that a third of the capital’s taxi fleet, more than 4,600 vehicles, are now zero emission capable.

“I am aware that the pandemic has proven extremely challenging for members of the taxi trade. Alongside the financial support schemes offered by the Government, I have lobbied the Treasury for specific support for London’s taxi and private hire industries.”

So how much has the taxi fleet changed pre and post pandemic?

Here we breakdown and compare the age and type of vehicles licensed in April 2019 and July 2021 respectively. It’s only here that you can really see where the fleet was hardest hit over the last two years.

Unsurprisingly, older diesel vehicles were lost over this two-year period. A mixture of vehicles reaching their age limits and drivers cashing in on incentives offered by the Mayor of London saw thousands of roadworthy black cabs lost, never to return despite the shortage.

In the two-year period analysed by TaxiPoint, 77% of the remaining TX2 black cabs were wiped out of London. Just 399 TX2 taxis remained in July 2021 compared to the 3,142 licensed just two years earlier.

Many might think that the TX4 hasn’t been affected too much given its cleaner credentials. However, a staggering 2,940 (30%) have been scrapped or sold on to other cities. These perfectly good, purpose-built wheelchair accessible vehicles are simply not being replaced at the same rate as they are being lost.

It’s the same story for the trusted Mercedes-Benz Vito taxi. A total of 916 have been lost in the two-year period.


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