NatRoad 2015: Payment terms rile trucking operators

Trucking group will lobby government for help on payment terms.


Trucking operators are trying to push back against big businesses trying to push out payment terms to as much as 120 days.

Members of NatRoad have asked the group to look at the length of payment terms in sectors of the industry and whether they are affecting the ability of companies to operate safely.

Furthermore, members want NatRoad to work with the Australian Trucking Association (ATA) to lobby Australia's small business minister Bruce Billson for support.

"This issue is becoming a hot one for the industry as big business seeks to use its power to force operators to buckle to their demands for delayed terms of payment," newly elected NatRoad president Allan Thornley says.

At NatRoad's 2015 conference that ran from August 13 to 15, its members passed a motion on payment terms.

"That NatRoad investigates the attempts by some sectors of the industry to extend term-of-payment length at the expense of transport operators’ ability to safely conduct business; and that NatRoad lobby, in conjunction with ATA, the Federal Parliament and refer this matter to the Minister for Small Business," the motion states.

Thornley has committed to following through on the members' demand.

"It is essential that NatRoad stands up for its members and for the industry in general to ensure reasonable terms of payment that enable the conduct of viable, profitable and safe business practices," he says.

"NatRoad has pledged its support to ensure just terms of payment".

He says the group is also preparing a submission to a Senate inquiry into road safety. The submission will touch on payment terms and chain of responsibility, Thornley says.

"Just as road transport operators are held to account for safe business practices, so must big business in its dealings with operators," he says.

Federal senators John Williams and Glenn Sterle recently took aim at big businesses for pushing out payment terms to 90 days and have threatened action against them in response.

FBT Transwest boss Cameron Dunn says payment terms of 120 days are becoming common in contracts put to tender.

The Road Safety Remuneration Tribunal (RSRT) requires contractor drivers to be paid within 30 days, but there is no similar measure in place requiring customers to pay trucking operators within a set timeframe.


Trucking operators are fed up with long payment terms.Do you have to put up with late-paying customers?

Posted by Owner Driver on Tuesday, 18 August 2015


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