Huge trucks barricaded the NLEX last week, causing a massive traffic jam. What’s the issue there?
On the other hand, the weight of loaded containers being shipped to the
Did your organization join that strike?
No. Our organization comprises 18 trucking associations, involving 8,000 individual companies. Eleven of these trucking associations operate in Metro Manila,
How big is the trucking industry? How many are affected by this problem?
Based on the LTO’s statistical data, the trucking industry has a total population of 266,915 trucks scattered all over the country. There are about 2.5M employees consisting of drivers, truck helpers, mechanics, tinsmiths, office personnel and their families who are directly independent on them. This excludes the suppliers of diesel fuel, parts and other service contractors whose income comes from the trucking industry. The truckers remit their dues to the national government by paying the annual registration, franchising, business permits and taxes of their earnings to the tune of P1.5B as their contribution to the government coffers. Three types of trucks being used in the industry, namely trailer trucks, 10-wheeler trucks, and dump trucks.
We have no way of determining the percentage composition of each type of truck in the whole population. But if we use CTAP’s own statistical data of trucks operating in Metro Manila, Calabarzon, and
Trucking companies are classified into small, medium, and large. The small ones accounting for 43 percent of the total are those with 1-9 units; medium, comprising 39 percent are those with 10-19 units; and the large ones, accounting for 18 percent, are those with 20 or more units.
Have you figured out the industry’s contribution to the economy?
In every part of the country, whether in the rural or urban areas, trucks are on the road carrying cargo. In
I can sense that the truck ban is also a problem among truckers. Is that true?
The problem is really about unsynchronized truck ban time in Metro Manila. Some LGUs in Metro Manila have their own truck ban ordinances which are not synchronized with the established truck ban regulation of MMDA. Their truck ban is from and while the MMDA’s is from and Because of this, the window period for the trucks has been shortened considerably, thus diminishing the capacity of truckers to earn and provide efficient service to customers. Export products must be delivered to the port before the scheduled departure of ship or airplane.
Moreover, towing companies accredited LGU’s charge the truckers ranging from P2,500 – P8,000, which can be described as capricious and detrimental to the interest of the industry. Tow truck personnel are abusive, they force the driver to get down, or grab the wheel from the driver.
I heard the Local Government Code also has created a lot of problem for the industry?
Some LGUs imposed annual fixed tax on delivery truck or van of manufacturers, producers, wholesalers, dealers or retailers in certain products pursuant to Sec 141 of the local government code. The province may levy an annual fixed tax for every truck/van or any vehicle used by manufacturers, producers, wholesalers, dealers, and retailers in the delivery or distribution of distilled spirits, fermented liquors, soft drinks, cigars and cigarettes, and other products as may be determined by the Sangguniang Panlalawigan, to sale outlets, or consumers, whether directly or indirectly within the province. We believe we do not fall within the purview of this provision because our trucks are not owned by the manufacturers, producers, wholesalers, etc, in the distribution of the said products to their respective sale outlets or consumers within the province, Cargo trucks, in entering the territory of any province, city or municipality is merely passing through their territorial jurisdiction. Moreover, cargo trucks are already subjected to Motor Vehicle User’s Charge (MVUC) by the national government under RA 8794, which is known as the Road Users Tax. To impose further taxation to similar facilities by said units will run counter to Sec 10 of RA 8794, which explicitly provides that no other tax for or any charge of similar nature as the MVUC shall be imposed by any political subdivision or unit in the country.
I understand you have a dialogue with government agencies yesterday, besides those you already have cited, what other problems did you bring to the attention of the government?
One is the cut-throat competition in terms of setting hauling rates. Small truckers offer very low rates to prospective customers just to keep their units running. Companies hire their services to economize in the delivery cost of goods to their customers. However, after several weeks or months, the truckers stop their service because they cannot sustain the operation of business. This malady in business practice destroys the stability of trucking industry.
Another is the continued increases in prices of diesel fuel and parts. The trucking industry is hard hit by the oil crisis. The strong demand and chronically scarce supplies of diesel fuel in the world market consistently moves its price higher. In view of this, the price of diesel in the local market goes up almost on a weekly basis which makes it doubly hard for the trucking industry to sustain business operations.
And third is the lack of government assistance. Trucking is the only sector in the transportation industry that has not been given any incentive by the government, not recognizing the fact that it is the life blood of commerce and trade in the country. Its service contributes immensely to the nation’s economic stability and development.
What do you think are the impacts of these problems on the economy?
The strict implementation of the axle load limit of 13,500 kgs will certainly junk a large portion of trucks population, thereby aggravating the unemployment problem in the country. It will create paralysis in the land transport system of goods. The hostile business climate—our problems at the NLEX, unsynchronized truck ban, high annual fixed tax by LGUs, coercive towing and high fees on towing, among others—will severely affect the stability of the trucking industry. Several small truckers have already closed shop due to their inability to sustain their business operations.
What were your recommendations to the government during the dialogue?
We have several recommendations.
1. From the point of origin abroad, the loaded containers being shipped to the
2. From the loading point in the
9. Provide incentives to truckers by allowing cooperatives to import goods free of tax and custom duties to mitigate the impact of the high cost of diesel fuel.
10. Assist the truckers in availing of the loan being extended to other sectors by government financial institutions on a long term basis to help trucking companies reflect/upgrade their units.
They formed a technical working group to study our proposals. They are going to have answers within seven days. The DTI/BOI has also promised us to provide us some fiscal incentives.
I thought all along trucking could also enjoy fiscal incentives.
No. We want fiscal incentives to mitigate the impact of high fuel prices. If the cooperatives enjoy exemptions from customs duties, why can’t we? We also hope government financial institutions could provide us long-term loans so we could upgrade our trucks, retool, or re-fleet, buy new units. But at this time, the government is doing nothing.
Does it mean they are going to stop apprehending “overloading” trucks within those seven days?
They didn’t say that.