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Monday, September 30, 2019

Hauliers look for budget incentives to go green

Incentives are being sought to make the logistics business more environmentally-friendly.
PETALING JAYA: Incentives for the logistics business to go green are being sought from the 2020 Budget, which the federal government will present on Oct 11.
A transport consultant says that all equipment and machinery at ports, railway yards and other logistics facilities should be electrically powered by 2023, while hauliers hope for a subsidy to encourage truckers to use B20 biodiesel in their lorries.
The move to go all-electric was mooted by Rosli Azad Khan, a consultant on transport planning, who said only gantry cranes are currently powered by electricity while vehicles such as prime movers, forklift trucks and other cranes and machinery use diesel.
“All these vehicles should be turned electric. All industrial transport equipment and machinery at ports, railway yards and other logistics facilities should be electrically powered by 2023,” he said.
Rosli Azad Khan.
He added that a deadline for the switch should be set, and incentives such as lower import taxes and tariffs should be provided.
“Encourage local manufacturers to produce electric motors and drive trains for electric vehicle components while allocating grants and low-interest loans for manufacturers of electric vehicles,” he said.
Association Of Malaysian Hauliers president Nazari Akhbar urged the government to encourage the use of B20 biodiesel among truckers by subsidising the cost of installing filters in their vehicles.
“This filter costs between RM3,000 and RM4,000. It is proposed that the government provide subsidies to transporters to invest in the filter to encourage them to use B20. An alternative proposal is for B20 biodiesel to be sold at lower rates than normal diesel,” he added.
Nazari Akhbar.
Nazari also said the road to West Port in Port Klang, Selangor, is in urgent need of upgrade to a three-lane highway as certain stretches are narrow and dangerous.
“It cannot cope with the existing traffic, resulting in frequent accidents and causing long and heavy congestion,” he said.
He suggested that new street lamps be installed and existing ones properly maintained as the road becomes more hazardous at night due to poor visibility.
He also called for prospective drivers to be given free training, in order to overcome the shortage of lorry drivers, in line with calls by the Pan-Malaysian Bus Operators Association.
Nazari also suggested that government grants be given for companies to upgrade their IT systems.
“Sophisticated IT systems are needed for businesses to be competitive. Helping local companies upgrade their systems will encourage local SME transporters to compete with multinational companies.”
Nathan Suppiah.
Meanwhile, the Malaysian National Shippers Council (MNSC) urged Putrajaya to form a Maritime Commission of Malaysia in order to regulate the maritime shipping industry.
MNSC secretary-general Nathan Suppiah spoke of unregulated service providers whom he said had allegedly been increasing their port charges. He said such claims had been raised by shippers at multiple forums.
He also said the cost of importing had risen from RM650 per twenty-foot equivalent unit to RM1,330 in 2016, an increase of 104%. He said this was based on comparisons of land-side charges for shipping lines in Port Klang. - FMT

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