In part 4 and the finale of the Taiwan Turnaround series looking at how Taiwan’s internet tech scene is catching up, TechNode looks at the effects that regulations have had on the startup economy and how the government plans to be more accommodating. Read Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3.

In February 2017, Uber was forced to suspend its operations in Taiwan after the government deemed the ride offering app as breaching transportation laws and passed penalties of as high as TWD 25 million per infraction  (around $827,000) against unregistered drivers. While Uber is no stranger to run-ins with regulators, this fine was the highest the ride-hailing company had faced anywhere in the world.

“These developments directly threaten the interest of over a million Taiwanese citizens [who offer rides through Uber],” Uber Asia Pacific’s regional general manager Mike Brown wrote in an open letter to the authority. “They also send a clear message to would-be startups to steer clear of Taiwan, deterring both local entrepreneur and foreign investment.”

Start your free trial now.

Get instant access to all our premium content, archives, newsletters, and online community.

Monthly Membership

Yearly Membership

What you get

Full access to all premium content and our full archives

Members'-only newsletters

Preferential access and discounts to all TechNode events

Direct access to the TechNode newsroom

Start your free trial now.

Get instant access to all our premium content, archives, newsletters, and online community.

Monthly Membership

Yearly Membership

Linda Lew

Linda Lew is a Beijing-based journalist who covers technology, start-ups and business in China. You can reach her at lindalew at aliyun dot com.