Transport for London (TfL) has decided not to renew Uber’s licence and said the taxi company is not fit and proper to operate.
London Mayor Sadiq Khan said he “fully supports” TFL’s decision.
Critics said the decision is “disgraceful” and a “disaster” for Londoners – and said the only people to benefit will be the black cab lobby.
GMB, the driver’s union, said the ruling was a legal victory.
The decision comes on the eve of the Labour party conference.
But fears are growing of what the decision could mean for employment in London, with Uber employing 40,000 drivers.
Sam Dumitriu, research economist at the Adam Smith Institute, said: “TfL is choosing to punish the 3.5 million Londoners who regularly use Uber just because it’s cheaper, it’s safer, and it’s quicker.
“This decision jeopardises the livelihoods of 40,000 drivers who choose to use the app because it gives them valuable flexibility.
“The only people that will benefit are the Black Cab lobby who have crushed a competitor through cronyism, rather than providing a better service.
“Londoners will face higher prices, longer wait times and will no longer benefit from a safe service where every journey is logged and tracked by GPS.
“Sadiq Khan likes to claim that London is open, but this decision sends a powerful message that London is completely closed to innovation, competition and business.”
Mr Kahn said: “I want London to be at the forefront of innovation and new technology and to be a natural home for exciting new companies that help Londoners by providing a better and more affordable service.
“However, all companies in London must play by the rules and adhere to the high standards we expect – particularly when it coms to the safety of customers.”
Alex Wild, research director at the Taxpayers’ Alliance, said: “This announcement is terrible news for those who rely on the service for transport and a living, but what’s especially galling is the seven figure annual subsidy TfL provides to militant unions like the RMT who will be celebrating their latest victory over ordinary Londoners tonight.”
Maria Ludkin, GMB legal director, said: “As a result of sustained pressure from drivers and the public, Uber has suffered yet another defeat – losing its license to operate in London.
“It’s about time the company faced up to the huge consequences of GMB’s landmark employment tribunal victory – and changed its ways.
“No company can be behave like it’s above the law, and that includes Uber.
“No doubt other major…