Livestock exports expected to increase backed by high industry confidence

Research showing that a large section of the Australian community knows very little about livestock exports highlights the importance of participants in the industry being willing to have conversations with people interested in finding out more.

Recent research shows that people working in the livestock supply chain are proud of their role in the industry and happy to speak up about current conditions.

From participants in the survey, including livestock producers, service providers such as shearers and truck drivers, shipboard veterinarians and stock handlers, and exporters’ staff they all have a positive view of the industry.

In contradiction to those working in the livestock industry, the survey also revealed a large section of the Australian community knows very little about the process of livestock exports.

This highlights the importance of people working in the industry being willing to have conversations with people interested in finding out more to break down several misconceptions.

Of the 161 participants, 72% were confident about talking about their role in the livestock export industry with new people they meet, while 91% were confident talking about it with family and friends.

Asked about the industry itself, 63% believed it listens to and respects community options, while 61% believed it is prepared to change its practices in response to community concerns.

Not surprisingly, this is higher than the general Australian community, at 34% and 36% respectively on those questions.

While it was a relatively small sample, the survey provides a valid snapshot of how the industry is viewed by those directly involved in it.

And by supply chain participants, as an accompaniment to a wider Australian community sentiment project being carried out by LiveCorp.

The aim is to repeat the survey every 3-6 months and encourage more people in the wider industry to get involved.

LiveCorp is keen to understand the conversations already happening, and those which participants in the supply chain are less willing to have with people outside it, to help improve communication about the industry’s changing practices and improving performance.

Part of that effort is knowing what issues are being brought up in conversations where people want more details and/or reassurance.

Whether they are inside or apart from the industry – to help ensure there’s concise, easy to read and factual information available for those wanting to know more.

Anyone with ideas on resources that would help them have those conversations, or topics to cover in ‘frequently asked questions’ on the Livecorp website, is encouraged to email them to livecorp@livecorp.com.au. You can also sign up to do the next survey.

A summary of the industry survey results is available in infographic form. The findings of the wider community sentiment survey can be found in the report Live export and the Australian community or in infographic form.

Truck charges will be increased unless some alternative reasoning is presented  

With steady increases in road transport movement the Australian, state and territory governments are looking at increasing truck charges from 1 July 2021.

The proposal on the table is to reduce the fuel tax credits that can currently be claim by 0.6 cents per litre.

And in addition increase the national roads component of truck and trailer registration charges by 2.5%, in the states that apply the national charges.

Whether these changes are warranted will revealed in a survey being conducted by the ATA to understand how the proposed increase would affect trucking businesses.

Many carriers are just getting back on their feet following the COVID-19 border restrictions that caused many delays, so many truckies may not agree these increased operating charges are warranted at this time.

As outside business expenses apart from road-user operating charges kick-in it is likely more carriers will be forced to pass on increased fees to customers.

Too many imposts at this time could even see carriers move out of long-haul and if that happens it will over-burden a market  that is beginning to increase demand once again.

A more appropriate response would be to delay the proposed costs until at least 1 July 2022. By this time we are all expecting to see the end of the uncertainty of the COVID-19 pandemic, and get back to a normal business flow.

And while there will be possible freight volume rebounds during 2021, most carriers will need any additional income to offset the haphazard influences of 2020.

Truck operators can get more detail about the proposed increase here.

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