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AFTER growing 10% last year, the trucking industry is betting on a 30% growth this year despite the volatility of fuel prices.

The Confederation of Truckers Association of the Philippines (CTAP) and the North Harbor Truckers said the expected influx of cargoes is making them very bullish about their business.

“The trucking industry is getting rosy. We have increased our growth projections aggressively this year as we expect more and more cargoes to pass through our ports,” CTAP president Col. Rodolfo De Ocampo told PortCalls.

The North Harbor truckers said they are also bullish this year largely because of the active mining and construction businesses.

They said they expect the domestic market to remain resilient with increased loads for almost all domestic vessels.

In the first semester of 2006, domestic vessels were only 70-80% full but the percentage swelled to 95% by the second half of 2007.

“We expect such performance to be even better this year. Hopefully we will be able to fully recover from the slow business of the past couple of years,” the group, whose members include the Allied Transport Group (ATG), the Integrated North Harbor Truckers Association and the WGA Truckers, said.

According to ATG, if fuel prices stabilize, truckers will be able to register a bigger growth this year compared to the last three years when they saw a negative revenue and volume picture.

The price of diesel, the most commonly used fuel by trucks, increased almost 15% in the last few months from P32 per liter.

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