No satisfaction for road hauliers

Topical issue

No satisfaction for road hauliers

10. 01. 2020 14:11

The strike of the Slovak Haulier Union continues on Friday in 12 Slovak towns all across Slovakia leaving desperate foreign hauliers passing the borders. The union has stated that it considers its strike the last resort solution. It demands from state representatives that the road tax should be cut by 50 percent and that the collection of road tolls should be suspended until a new toll administrator is determined.

Slovakia's road haulage association CESMAD has tentatively agreed with Finance Minister Ladislav Kamenicky on its two crucial proposals. Pursuant to the amendment to the Income Tax Act, taxation of driver allowance should be abolished. Driver allowance compensates employees' and thus also drivers' expenses associated with the performance of work outside their permanent workplace. Both parties also agreed that the rate of road tax could be slashed by 12.5% on average depending on the vehicle category, the number of axles or weight by adjusting the applicable law. The association considers this cut insufficient and perceives it as the ministry's initial negotiating position while the topic will be discussed further.

Finance Minister Ladislav Kamenicky confirmed on Thursday the agreement with CESMAD Slovakia but reiterated that the Union of Slovak Road Haulers's demand to reduce this tax by 50% is unrealistic, given that this year's budget is closed. The Ministry views it as pure politicking, given the general election will take place in a few weeks.

Both offers made by the Finance Ministry would still have to be okayed by Parliament. If the scrapped taxation of allowances for foreign business travels has minimum impact on the budget, the ministry will present both measures to the parliamentary session that will take place in January. Kamenicky thus noted that hauliers should start looking for support of these measures among both coalition and opposition MPs.

Martina Šimkovičová, Photo: TASR

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