Friday, September 24, 2010

Hauliers to impose fuel surcharge

PETALING JAYA Sept 12 - Malaysia 's containers hauliers will impose a fuel adjustment factor (FAF) surcharge on their customers because of the continued high fuel prices.

For the period commencing from October 15 till December 31, the applicable FAF is 10.15 percent of the 40-foot container rate published in the Container Hauliers Association of Malaysia (CHAM) tariff.

The FAF is applied to both the 20-footer and 40-footer containers, said CHAM and Association of Malaysian Hauliers (AMH) in a joint statement Saturday.

They said the fourth quarter FAF was based on the average weekly spot price for diesel in June, July and August this year, compared against the cost of diesel factored in the 1974 CHAM tariff.

Similar to reimbursement of toll charges incurred by haulage operators, the FAF is applied as a cost recovery measure to reimburse haulage operators from the increase in fuel costs compared with CHAM's 1974 tariff, they said.

As such, it is an additional surcharge applied over and above any pricing arrangements currently in place between customers and their respective haulage operator.

CHAM and AMH said the surcharge will be reviewed and announced on a quarterly interval based on a formula, taking into account the average cost of fuel for each quarter compared against the cost of fuel factored when formulating the CHAM tariff back in 1974.

CHAM president, Mirzan Mahathir, said the customers and the Government would be informed soon about the FAF.

"The hauliers are hoping for understanding from everybody as fuel prices have gone up drastically to an unprecedented level in the last few years," he said at a joint press conference by CHAM and AMH here Saturday.

All this while, the hauliers have been absorbing the cost but this time, it is no longer possible, he said, adding that hauliers needed funds for reinvestment to keep their equipment up-to-date and offer quality services to customers.

The FAF is just to cover the fuel cost and the hauliers are among the last to impose the surcharge among members in the transportation industry, said AMH president, Shalimin Shafiee.

Others involved in the transportation business such as airlines and shipping companies have already imposed surcharge, while bus operators have been asking for a 40 percent hike in fare in order to stay afloat.

CHAM vice president Azmin Che Yusoff said diesel price had increased from about 40 sen per litre two years ago to about 96 sen per litre after subsidy. Excluding subsidy the price is about RM1.20.

He said for Kontena Nasional Bhd, every sen of increase in diesel price meant a rise in cost by RM200,000 per year for the company.

CHAM and AMH estimated that the combined loss of the industry players in 2003 was in excess of RM50 million and one of the many factors cited as the reason for the poor financial performance was escalating fuel cost.

Other reasons included intense competition as a result of the emergence of many new players in the last three years and also the fact that the tariff structure has not changed for about 30 years.

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