Australia’s governments should not increase truck road user and registration charges by more than the expected inflation rate, 1.5 per cent, in 2021-22, the CEO of the Australian Trucking Association, Andrew McKellar, said today.
Mr McKellar was releasing the ATA response to the governments’ proposal to increase charges by 2.5 per cent. The government proposal would see charges rise by substantially more than inflation and more than many trucking businesses can afford.
“More than a third of the trucking businesses we surveyed told us their business activity was still down compared to immediately before the bushfires and the start of the pandemic,” Mr McKellar said.
“Trucking businesses also have great difficulty passing charge increases on to their customers,” he said.
Mr McKellar said the proposed increase of 2.5 per cent was based on an inflation forecast from May 2019.
“Treasury’s inflation forecast for 2021-22 is 1.5 per cent. Truck charges should not go up by more than this forecast,” he said.
Mr McKellar said the ATA would continue arguing for measures to make charges fairer and more affordable, and to improve the cashflow of businesses.
“We need a ban on payment times longer than 30 days, the extension of price regulation to truck tolls and port access charges and changes to allow businesses to pay truck registration charges by monthly direct debit,” he said.
“In addition, some ATA members have raised serious concerns about the misuse of primary producer registration concessions.