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Taxi drivers in Madrid are protesting against corporations like Uber who face fewer regulations and makes more profit putting regular taxis at a disadvantage.
Hundreds of taxi drivers protested outside one of Madrid's largest tourist fairs Wednesday, using their cabs to block access to roads and burning rubbish as part of an open-ended strike against Uber and other ride-hailing services.
They have been striking against the services, which offer rides that undercut taxi prices since Monday, complaining that regulations are being ignored with unfair competition. The Madrid strike followed strikes in Barcelona who began striking Friday.
One of the protesting drivers was injured during the demonstration. He "is in very serious condition", a spokesperson for Madrid's La Paz hospital said.
In September, Spain's government gave the ride-hailing companies four years to comply with regulations granting them just one new license for every 30 taxi licenses.
"It is not right that after working so many years like we have been, they now just want to sweep us out of the way," said taxi driver Francisco Sanchez. "They (politicians and ride-hailing services) are all in it together."
With regions free to adopt their own restrictions, Catalonia plans a bill forcing customers of ride-hailing services to order transport from 15 minutes to an hour beforehand, a government source said.
Striking Barcelona taxi drivers will vote on the proposed restrictions Wednesday, according to reports.
Unauto VTC, an association representing the ride-hailing services, said taxi sector "blackmail" had "kidnapped" Barcelona.
The striking drivers were met with police violence.