French court upholds ban on unlicensed taxis, hitting Uber

PARIS (REUTERS) - France's highest administrative court on Friday backed restrictions on unlicensed taxi services in a decision that will hit US start-up Uber.

The constitutional council said that unlicensed taxis had to return to their bases after dropping off a customer or await new fares from a parking lot, upholding a ban on them driving around looking for new clients.

A Paris appeals court had been waiting for the decision before ruling on whether to ban Uber's unlicensed taxi service, known as UberPOP.

The case before the appeals court was brought by three competing car services - LeCab, GreenTomatoCars and Transdev Shuttle - and taxi unions.

It sought to ban the UberPop service that allows drivers to use their private cars to offer rides to others at cheaper rates than traditional taxis.