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Rego, fuel charges to increase from July 1

Federal Government rejects industry proposal to delay new heavy vehicle charges, announcing an increase from July 1

Heavy vehicle charges will jump from July 1, after the Federal Government rejected a proposal to delay them until January next year.

Minister for Infrastructure and Transport Anthony Albanese today chose to implement a recommendation from the National Transport Commission (NTC) to raise the road user charge by 0.7 cents a litre, cutting the fuel tax credit to 16.34 cents.

Federal Interstate Registration Scheme (FIRS) charges will also increase by 3.2 percent.

State and territory governments will also increase registration fees from July 1, with B-double operators the worst affected.

Based on the NTC’s calculations, B-double registration will rise by almost $3000, while a semi-trailer will cost an extra $240 to register.

Citing the impact of the global economic downturn, the Australian Trucking Association (ATA) tried to persuade Albanese to hold off on increasing charges and to use his influence to convince his state and territory counterparts to follow his lead.

However, the peak lobby group does support the 3.2 percent increase, backing claims made by the NTC that governments are spending more on the road network.

“Just as commercial rail, shipping and aviation companies must pay competitive rates for the infrastructure they rely on, it is only fair the trucking industry contribute to the road infrastructure it uses,” Albanese says.

While the new charges may add further pressure to operators struggling to maintain running costs, a spokesman for Albanese says a fall in diesel prices may help soften the blow.

Furthermore, the spokesman says the industry will benefit directly from the Government’s decision to increase charges.

“Part of this funding will go towards heavy vehicle rest areas,” the spokesman says.

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