Kyrgyz Taxis Take Left Turn

Parliament is reviewing legislation that would ban the use of right-hand drive cars as taxis. Alina Kenjeeva reports that taxi drivers with Japanese-import cars are worried for their future.

Kyrgyz Taxis Take Left Turn

Parliament is reviewing legislation that would ban the use of right-hand drive cars as taxis. Alina Kenjeeva reports that taxi drivers with Japanese-import cars are worried for their future.

Wednesday, 15 July, 2009
As in most other countries in the world, road users in Kyrgyzstan drive on the right side of the highway, for which left-hand drive vehicles are normal. But in recent years many people have got hold of cars originally made for Japan’s domestic market, with their steering wheels located on the right.



Taxi drivers who own such vehicles say they will have no option but to sell them at a substantial loss if the law is passed.



The authorities say it is dangerous for the public to have taxi drivers sitting on the right-hand – and in this case wrong – side of the car and unable to get a clear view of oncoming traffic. Narynbek Moldobaev, one of the members of parliament who drafted the law, says all the evidence shows that the accident rate is much higher in right-hand drive cars.



Legislators will look at the bill again in the autumn.
Kyrgyzstan
Support our journalists