Dear taxi industry,
128 years of mobility-on-demand - that's how you can see the taxi industry. Way back when the first Benz Victoria drove on the streets, she quickly won the hearts of customers in the competition with the horse-drawn hansom cabs.
Over 100 years later, the signs in Hamburg point to change yet again. In the age of climate crisis, the people of Hamburg are aware that we must act quickly and purposefully in order to reduce CO2 emissions and make Hamburg a climate-neutral city. The reduction of CO2 emissions is an extremely important goal, especially for traffic. In comparison to 2017, Hamburg wants to save nearly 1.4 million tons by 2030 - an ambitious goal. To this end, we are massively expanding public transport and at the same time setting up underground and suburban trains to be CO2-neutral. Therefore, it is of course natural to tackle this topic in the taxi sector as well. I am very pleased that we have encountered a lot of openness in the preliminary talks with taxi associations, companies and drivers.
picture: © Henning Angerer
We have the impression that the entire industry wants to make its contribution to finally advancing electrification on a massive scale. It is clear to us that politics too must promote this change as much as possible. I am therefore delighted that we in the Hamburg Senate, with great unanimity, have made the decision to actively support the taxi industry with the acquisition of electric vehicles. The Authority for Traffic and Mobility Transition (Behörde für Verkehr und Mobilitätswende) is therefore working tirelessly to get 100 e-taxis on Hamburg's streets by the ITS World Congress in autumn 2021, the convention for new and digital mobility. This is accompanied by additional financial subsidies, the further expansion of charging infrastructure and its partly exclusive use by the taxi industry, combined with reliable pricing of charging costs. Together, it is important to use the large CO2 saving potential of 25,000 tons of CO2 per year due to the high mileage of the taxis.
For me, shaping the mobility transition to make Hamburg a climate-neutral city does not mean playing different modes of transport against each other. The mobility transition means not only introducing new additional offers, but also improving existing and proven concepts and linking them with one another. The people of Hamburg should be able to access safe, comfortable, fast and environmentally friendly modes of transport at all times. The electric taxi therefore plays an important role here. Because even during the COVID-19 pandemic, our city is showing the great value of its taxi fleet. Many people appreciate the opportunity to get to their vaccination appointment quickly and safely by taxi. The inclusion taxis are also of inestimable importance. They enable people with disabilities to move freely, spontaneously and flexibly. The committed taxi drivers, who are valued throughout the city for their local knowledge and helpfulness, aid them with this. We also want to further expand and improve the range of inclusion taxis with the current project.
Shaping the mobility transition and leading it to success can only be achieved together. I am therefore pleased about the good cooperation between the Senate, the Authority for Transport and Mobility, and the taxi industry.
Committed, inclusive and soon emission-free: with our e-taxi project, we are making Hamburg's taxis fit for the future and making our city a national pioneer!
Best regards from the Hanseatic City of Hamburg,