Year of crises prompts ATA call for road user charge deferral

Maguire tells McCormack now is not the time for fuel tax increase

Year of crises prompts ATA call for road user charge deferral
Ben Maguire and Michael McCormack


The Australian Trucking Association (ATA) has asked federal and state governments to put off a planned increase in the truck fuel tax and registration charges, "given the double impact of the bushfires and also now the coronavirus".

In November, transport ministers identified a preference for the truck fuel tax and registration charges to rise 2.5 per cent from July 1, 2020 and then another 2.5 per cent from July 1, 2021.

In total, this would see the effective tax on fuel increase 1.3 cents per litre, and the national registration charge on a six axle articulated truck would increase $287, ATA notes.

The association’s CEO, Ben Maguire, raised the need to delay the charge increase with federal transport minister Michael McCormack via video conference.

"We’re seeking your support to delay these rises if at all possible," Maguire tells McCormack, noting that trucking businesses in the grocery and home delivery sectors were "flat out", but that others had seen their work plummet.

Read the ATA on Australia's fuel security, here

"The ATA’s rolling survey of trucking operators is showing us the effects of the epidemic. In the last week, 38 per cent of the businesses we surveyed reported a decline in activity," he says.

"In February, the ATA recommended that the increases be deferred to 1 July 2021.

"Even if the state governments decide to press ahead and increase their registration charges, the Australian Government should delay any increase to the road user charge. It’s not required to follow the states’ decision."


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