TIC on front foot in vehicle subsidies debate


As the debate on car-industry subsidies rolls on, causing divisions in major political parties, the Truck Industry Council (TIC) has shone the spotlight again on the lack of consistency in government policy to the local vehicle production. At a time when pressure for safer, cleaner and greener heavy vehicles has never been higher, the TIC says the lack of policy attention to the production of trucks compared with cars could not be more plain.

By Rob McKay | January 19, 2012

As the debate on car-industry subsidies rolls on, causing divisions in major political parties, the Truck Industry Council (TIC) has shone the spotlight again on the lack of consistency in government policy to the local vehicle production.

At a time when pressure for safer, cleaner and greener heavy vehicles has never been higher, the TIC says the lack of policy attention to the production of trucks compared with cars could not be more plain.

"Australian truck manufacturers have been building trucks for decades without consistent government subsidies or incentives," TIC CEO Tony McMullan tells ATN.

"In the recent past, when incentives - for example, the recently axed Green Car Fund - are applied to the ‘Automotive Manufacturing Sector’, truck manufacturers and their customers have been ignored.

"TIC has been working consistently over the past 10 years to highlight this anomaly to both State and Federal governments, and will continue in its efforts to promote the benefits of today’s safer, greener trucks, as well as the need for incentives to encourage operators to accelerate the renewal rate of Australia’s truck fleet."

Local manufacturers service about half the $4 billion domestic heavy-vehicle market and employs about 17,500 people.

With four local manufacturers soon to become three, with the withdrawal of Cat Trucks after a short sojourn, leaving Iveco, Paccar and Volvo, and unit sales on falling 23 percent in the three years since the global financial crisis hit in 2007, pressure is being felt.

The silver lining at present is that heavy-duty truck sales did increase 4.8 percent in calendar 2011.

You can also follow our updates by joining our LinkedIn group or liking us on Facebook