MEMBERS of the Confederation of Truckers Association of the Philippines (CTAP) are eyeing a 20% increase in trucking rates this month, CTAP president Rodolfo T. De Ocampo told PortCalls in a telephone interview.
“Our issues are still the same: the escalating prices of diesel/fuel and spare parts. We cannot keep up anymore,” he said, adding the 20% proposal came out of the CTAP board’s preliminary meeting last week.
CTAP members account for about a third of the country’s total trucking population. The 20% increase supersedes the group’s 25% rate hike proposed in February specifically to cover North Luzon Expressway toll fee adjustments. The new rate hike petition is mainly due to the fuel price hike. De Ocampo said fuel comprises 40% of a trucker’s overhead. In less than a year, the price of fuel per liter has gone up 46%, he noted.
The Alliance of Concerned Truck Owners and Organization (ACTOO), on the other hand, said it will not jack up rates for now, saying the time is not right. ACTOO chairman and president Ricardo Papa said rates in the trucking business are dictated by the market.
“We cannot just increase rates because everybody else does. This is not the time,” he stressed, noting truckers have been experiencing low volume of deliveries in the last few years.
According to him, since the time of then President Joseph Estrada, the trucking business has been in decline, with deliveries now 40% lower.”Given this situation, it is inappropriate to impose higher rates,” he said.