Taxi-hailing app company Uber teamed up with Indonesia’s second largest taxi operator, Express, to launch a pilot car-booking programme in a country where the US firm previously faced obstacles.

Under the programme, Express taxi drivers can take orders through the Uber app when they are not accepting street hails or requests by phone or SMS, the Jakarta Globe reported. The companies didn’t announce when the pilot would start.

Express COO Benny Setiawan told the Globe the taxi company aims to boost utilisation of its fleet while allowing its drivers to benefit from the flexibilty, exposure and increased economic opportunities offered by ride-sharing technology.

In June, the government warned operators of taxi-hailing services, including Uber, it would more tightly enforce new regulations. Under Indonesian traffic law it is illegal for an individual to provide public transport services – drivers must obtain special public transport licences and operate as part of a cooperative or company.

Express faced difficulties of its own, losing customers and drivers to rivals Uber, Grab and Go-Jek over the last two years, the newspaper said.

The taxi company also plans to provide drivers with financing to purchase cars, enabling them to meet Uber’s standards.