A nationwide strike by taxi drivers on Monday was called off after the intervention of Transport Minister Yiannis Karousos and a meeting between representatives of the drivers, head of the licencing authority Christos Karas and officials of the ministry.

According to a statement, the parties involved will work on finding a solution to the problem with short and long-haul groups by the end of the week while a bill dealing with illegal taxis will be tabled within three months.

The taxi drivers started the work stoppage at 7am on Monday, protesting against plans by the ministry and demanding a reduction in fuel prices.

The drivers are also calling for a solution regarding operating problems of airport taxis. They strongly object to the licencing authority playing a role in the way taxis operate at the airports.

The licencing authority decided to abolish the current system in which taxis are divided into short and long-haul groups and wants to introduce a system whereby they take a number and wait in queue to take customers anywhere they wish.

The taxi drivers called the way the authority acted insulting.

“The professional organisations consider it absurd not to be listened to for so long with the same requests which have already caused a key blow which will lead to the extermination of the industry,” the statement said.