Truck registration freeze boosts industry run

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  • Plant & Equipment

Transport ministers recognise extraordinary contraction in economic activity

Truck registration freeze boosts industry run
Ben Maguire

 

In one of the shortest communiques to come from it, the Transport and infrastructure Council (TIC) has agreed to leave heavy vehicle charges at their current levels during the next financial year.

The move by most of the nation’s transport ministers  is greeted warmly by an industry that has seen many of its pleas come to fruition during the present economic crisis, including this one.

"These charges, normally set to recover the heavy vehicle share of recent road expenditure, will not increase by the 2.5 per cent proposed last November," the single-issue communique, which has often covered around eight points, states.

"Transport ministers have taken this decision in light of the extraordinary contraction in economic activity and income expected for the June quarter.


HUGE industry welcome for road charge freeze. Read more


"By freezing charges, Council will support the operators of heavy vehicles, many of whom are small businesses.

"Some are working hard under tight margins to keep essential goods moving during the Covid-19 pandemic, while others are experiencing a severe downturn in work.

"This decision means the Commonwealth Road User Charge will stay at 25.8 cents per litre for 2020-21, and State and Territory registration fees for heavy vehicles will stay at their current levels except where minor administrative adjustments are needed.

"The Western Australian Government is considering 2020-21 heavy motor vehicle licence fees independently of the Council decision."


Read how the industry took its hike concerns to Scott Buchholz, here


The Australian Trucking Association (ATA) describes the move as "welcome news".

"Together with our members, we highlighted the enormous financial impact a proposed increase would have on trucking operators across Australia, the majority of which are small and family businesses," ATA CEO Ben Maguire says. 

"Having faced the devastating bushfires and now the coronavirus, many businesses have been impacted and seen a decline in activity.

"The ATA is grateful that governments clearly understand the challenges faced by industry and are supporting trucking operators who are doing it tough."

He goes on to urge WA to come to the same conclusion and act accordingly.

"We encourage the West Australian Government to follow suit and give trucking operators the much‑needed financial relief that those in the east will receive," Maguire says. 

"Trucking business across Australia are all facing the same challenges, and all deserve the same support."

Recent wins for the industry, to a greater or lesser extent, include reopening of facilities for truck drivers, some instant asset write-offs, trucking’s access to the JobKeeper employee payment scheme and recognition of the industry as an essential service.

 

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