Friday, April 23, 2010

Australian Trucking Group Objects To Tax Increases

Proposed Increases 'Biased' Against Operators
Shipping News Feature

AUSTRALIA – The Australian Trucking Association (ATA) has submitted a request to the National Transport Commission, the body that make recommendations to the Federal Australian government on transport policy, to not allow a general increase in the fuel tax and registration charges paid by trucking operators in 2010-11.

The ATA is responding to an NTC consultation paper that argues that the road haulage industry’s fuel tax and registration charges should go up by 4.2 per cent in 2010-11.

ATA Chief Executive, Stuart St Clair, said the ATA submission showed the existing level of charges would collect more than enough revenue to cover the cost of the industry’s use of the road system.

“According to the NTC, governments need to recover $2,210.6 million from the trucking industry in 2010-11 to cover the cost of our use of Australia’s roads,” Stuart said.

“The ATA forecasts the industry will pay $2,986.9 million in registration charges and fuel tax in 2010-11, $776 million more than the NTC’s assessment. In other words, there is no need for a general increase in truck charges. We will pay our fair share and more”.

Stuart added that the formula used by the NTC to calculate the adjustment had a statistical bias toward collecting too much money from the industry.

“The NTC reached its recommended figure – a 4.2 per cent increase in charges – on the basis of 2005-06 data about vehicle use. But those figures are out of date. The industry will pay much more in registration charges and fuel tax than the NTC has included in its calculations.

“In contrast, the ATA submission uses 2010-11 projections of road usage to deliver a more accurate picture of the revenue governments will actually receive,” he said.