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01.04.2010 04:14    Comments: 4    Categories: News in General      Tags: fair play on fuel  

Road haulage firms must recover rising costs by increasing the rates they charge customers.

That is the stark warning from the Road Haulage Association, as both fuel duty and diesel costs continue to rise.

“Transport firms face a triple-whammy of rising diesel commodity costs, endlessly rising fuel duty and increases in costs elsewhere,” says RHA Director of Policy Jack Semple.

“In the past 12 months, the price of diesel before duty and taxes has risen by 18%, largely due to the sinking value of the pound against the dollar.

“The Chancellor’s decision to increase duty every three months rather than once a year is clearly designed to disguise the impact from motorists but the impact on the haulage industry’s costs is severe. By April 2011, he will have increased fuel duty seven times in just 28 months.

“On April 1, the headline fuel duty goes up by another of 1p a litre; but the ending of the Treasury’s biofuel duty rebate to oil companies will lead to an additional increase in the price of diesel of up to 1p a litre.”

“UK duty amounts to a 25% tax on the operation of a typical 44-tonne truck – and is by far the highest in the EU. British hauliers are paying up to £12,000 a year more than their EU competitors,” he says.

“Maintenance costs have risen sharply as a result of the deterioration in road conditions since the recent severe weather and members have reported sharp increases in spring, suspension and tyre costs, which cannot be ignored. Employment, training and overhead costs have also been rising.

“With demand and confidence still low in many sectors of the economy, hauliers are often fearful of asking for rate increases. But customers must recognise that running a professional transport business requires sustainable haulage rates,” Semple concluded.

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