Carbon tax road train
Truckies aren’t expected to escape tax-related price rises
TRUCKING operators will be hit by the carbon tax even though the industry has been given a two-year buffer before it applies directly to them.
This is the view of the Australian Trucking Association, which has been warning its members to expect increased costs to be passed on by suppliers.
The Gillard government relented and excused the truck operators from paying an increase in fuel tax until July 1, 2014, but the ATA says that won’t stop the carbon tax from impacting its members due to the increased cost pressures on their suppliers.
The ATA issued a statement claiming transport operations that use cold stores would be affected.
‘‘ The tax is likely to have a particularly large impact on trucking businesses that operate cold stores, because electricity typically accounts for about 30 per cent of their costs,’’ says ATA chief executive Stuart St Clair.
‘‘ In NSW, electricity prices are set to rise 16 per cent on average, with nine percentage points of the increase coming from the carbon tax. Businesses will need to take this cost increase into account, as well as the substantial increase expected in the cost of refrigerants.’’
He says operators who offer road, rail and sea services will also cop other costs.
‘‘ Trucking businesses offering intermodal services will also face cost rises, with Pacific National (rail freight operator) imposing a 1.34 per cent carbon cost surcharge and the Spirit of Tasmania ferry service imposing a 2.04 per cent surcharge,’’ he says. The carbon tax, which was introduced on the first of this month, is not the only cost pressure for truck drivers.
The fuel tax credit that can be claimed by truck operators also reduced on the same day, dropping from 15.043¢ to 12.643¢ a litre. This means the effective fuel tax paid by truck operators has increased 10 per cent, rising from 23.1¢ to 25.5¢ a litre. Trailer registration costs have also risen across most states.
Rising costs: There will be no two-year reprieve for operators