The All Pakistan Cement Manufacturers Association (APCMA) has called on the federal government to immediately stop the implementation of the axle load regime, saying the action will have dire consequences for the Pakistani economy.
Axle load refers to the total weight load of a wheeled vehicle on the road for all wheels attached to a particular axle.
APCMA, Minister of Commerce Dr. In a letter dated 30 October addressed to Ejaz Gohar, he stated: “We write with great concern and concern in response to the recent implementation of the axle load regime, an action that has had sad consequences for the economy of Pakistan.”
The statement relates to the government’s decision to implement the axle load control regime without relaxation from 15 November 2023.
APCMA highlighted that in 2019, when the government suddenly introduced the axle load regime, the cost of essential goods increased by Rupees 154 billion ($0.55 billion) as a direct result of a sudden change in the axle load regime.
“The implementation of the new axle load regime significantly reduces the lifting capacity of each truck (40% on 22-wheelers and 100% on 10-wheelers). This will undoubtedly lead to an increase in freight costs of 50% to 60%, resulting in a loss of approximately $2 billion in fuel alone.” will contribute to an increase,” APCMA said.
It was stated that the decision would also lead to a decrease in foreign exchange inflow.
“Export activities will be negatively affected in two ways: a. Domestic freight costs of export goods will increase, making Pakistan’s exports less competitive in the global market.
“B. The vast majority of exports are done through 20-foot containers, which are currently loaded at 28 tonnes per container. With the axle load restriction, this container will carry only 14 tonnes, which will double the sea freight and make Pakistan’s exports unviable,” he said.
APCMA said the implementation of axle load would make Pakistan’s exports uncompetitive and unsustainable.
On the other hand, reducing axle load limits will lead to a significant increase in foreign exchange outflow due to increased expenses in the form of increased ARM expense and an increase in truck imports to meet the increasing demand.
“The reduction in the lifting capacity of trucks will inevitably lead to a significant increase in freight costs of approximately $1.75 billion (equivalent to 3.5% of total import costs),” he said.
APCMA shared that Pakistan’s cement industry imports 6 to 7 million tonnes of coal annually.
“Implementation of axle load restrictions will double the freight cost for both incoming raw materials and outgoing finished products. With the implementation of axle load, cement prices will increase from Rs 40 to Rs 50 per bag,” APCMA said.
The organization called on authorities to “immediately halt the implementation of the axle load regime.”
“A separate concrete strip should be added to highways and highways and financed by increasing truck tolls.
“The current axle load application can be allowed until the additional lane is ready and the higher maintenance cost can be offset by an increase in the fares of all vehicles (not just trucks),” the statement said.
news source (www.brecorder.com)