This year, in Bashkorsatn, the local road traffic regulator has uncovered 159 violations committed by bus operators who use Yandex.Buses and Atlas. Inspectors usually attempt to impute regular transit without a route map to bus companies as the only—at least distantly—applicable article from the Code of Administrative Offences.
TIARCENTER experts hope the regulatory guillotine that recently kicked off in Russia will optimize public transit regulation. It is notable that in Germany, where deregulation of the bus market launched in 2013, prices have become more affordable and service quality has improved, thanks to smart mobility services like Flixbus.
Regardless of the adequacy of existing regulations and law enforcement practices concerning intercity buses, it should be noted that it is fundamentally wrong to shift carriers’ responsibility to marketplaces, information intermediaries. Each carrier is free to connect to any platform, just like every carrier can publish ads in newspapers.
In general, platforms bring transparency and better adaptivity to such markets. Service providers gradually acquire online reputations formed by users’ reviews. The platforms themselves are not interested in working with offenders, says Anton Gubnitsyn, chair of the Russian Association of Electronic Communications’ Sharing Economy Cluster.