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ATA launches 2013 federal election campaign

Trucking lobby launches 2013 federal election campaign with focus on defeating push to extend the carbon tax to heavy vehicles

June 17, 2013

The Australian Trucking Association (ATA) has launched its 2013 federal election campaign with a prime focus on defeating a push to extend the carbon tax to heavy vehicles.

Launching the campaign yesterday, ATA Chairman David Simon emphasised the impact the tax would have on small trucking operators.

The Federal Government is due to extend the tax to trucking on July 1 next year, adding almost 7 cents per litre to the price of diesel.

“Most trucking businesses do not have the market power to increase their freight rates to cover the cost of the tax and operate on very tight margins as it is,” Simon says.

The ATA is trying to rally businesses and individuals to its cause and is also using Rays Haulage and Camhaul to highlight industry concerns with the tax.

Rays Haulage Director Roslyn Rahman says the business will have difficulty passing the tax on to its customers.

“Customers just don’t want to pay. We have been operating this family-based business for over 15 years and transport is just getting harder and harder,” she says.

David Camilleri from Camhaul says he is concerned about retrieving the carbon tax from customers as well.

The ATA has set up a website to allow people to get involved by sharing their thoughts and reading what others are thinking, sending letters to politicians, obtaining information sheets and signing up to the association’s newsletter.

Simon is adamant the tax will force small trucking operators to shut their doors, with repercussions for the industry and broader community as a whole.

“It would reduce the industry’s flexibility and productivity, and ultimately raise costs for everyone, because every item on the shelves of every supermarket is delivered by truck,” he says.

Despite the Government showing no sign of scrapping its plan to extend the tax to trucking, Simon says it is not too late for it to change its mind.

“The Coalition has already announced it would repeal the carbon tax completely,” he says.

The ATA’s campaign also focuses on road user charges.

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