Taxi and limousine services after the Bersani reform: an investigation on main Italian cities
Using data from a Bank of Italy survey, this paper analyzes the Italian taxi market and its recent changes. Local regulations are rather homogeneous, while there is a widespread disproportion, within municipal advisory committees, between the number of representatives of taxi drivers and that of consumers’ advocates. Indicators of service adequacy are seldom used. The average service costs are rather homogeneous across Italian provinces, while there is great variance of supply and fare structures. The instruments made available to municipalities by the Bersani Law 2006 have been used mainly in large cities. In many cases, the expansion of service, achieved mainly through additional shifts rather than through the issue of (free) additional licenses, has been the result of a trade-off for fare increases (in part to protect drivers’ income). Virtually no use has been made of municipal traffic rules. All in all it is difficult to evaluate the suitability of the decisions of municipalities with respect to market characteristics, given the lack of non-occasional information on market structure.
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