Chinese export cutbacks to disrupt Australian AdBlue supplies

NatRoad holds crisis meeting with Barnaby Joyce on diesel exhaust fluid shortage

Chinese export cutbacks to disrupt Australian AdBlue supplies
A possible shortage of AdBlue at the pump?


The National Road Transport Association (NatRoad) met with the Federal Government on December 3 to discuss the looming shortage of diesel exhaust fluid, the industry body had revealed.

Diesel exhaust fluid – commonly known by the trade name AdBlue – is refined from urea.

A global shortage has been exacerbated by China closing down its exports and the issue has been a significant problem in other nations, particularly South Korea.

NatRoad revealed it has been fielding calls from members reporting retail shortages of the fluid, which ensures diesel-powered trucks comply with national emission standards.

NatRoad chief executive officer Warren Clark said the situation is serious and the federal government needs to move fast.

"We will be making sure that the transport minister, deputy prime minister Barnaby Joyce, is briefed on the potential impact on the national supply chain and on our members," Clark said.

"Our industry isn’t the only one that will be affected, but we will be hit first and hardest.

"These issues go beyond NatRoad and the trucking industry.

"We are calling on the government to convene a task force of industry groups to look at options to mitigate the situation in the immediate term.

"It is time for leaders – industry, government, supply chain and major consumers – to work together to manage the challenges."

"If we learned one thing from COVID-19 it’s that a lack of co-ordination only compounds problems.

"While those issues reflected different health rules in different jurisdictions, the ball is squarely in the federal government’s court in terms of finding an alternate source."

Meanwhile, Western Roads Federation chief executive Cam Dumesny told Perth radio station 6PR's listeners the AdBlue shortage is a huge issue.

"We’re going to need to support our manufacturers, we’ve got about three manufacturers in Australia, we’re going to have to help them find strategic sourcing of the base agent from anywhere in the world if we can get.

"If we can’t do that you’ve got the worst case scenario … we start rationing it, if you follow the logic of that … which areas of transport to you want to prioritise?"


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