Combined call to extend asset write-off scheme
PEAK trucking bodies are pushing for an extension of the instant asset write-off scheme to December 31 and an increase of the threshold to $450,000, providing the purchases meet certain safety criteria.
In a joint letter to the Government, the Australian Trucking Association and Heavy Vehicle Industry Australia said the changes will provide a once in a generation opportunity to improve road safety outcomes and productivity all while stimulating the economy and saving jobs.
At present, the asset write-off scheme is limited to assets worth up to $150,000 and is due to expire on June 30.
"More than 90 per cent of purchases in our industry are financed, so ensuring transport operators can get access to capital is an important aspect of equipment purchases," said ATA chief executive Ben Maguire.
"This will only be possible once the economy is in recovery mode and operators are trading as normal.
"Most of the fleet is held by small enterprises - and they were not able to use the stimulus before the pandemic hit."
Mr Maguire said that also increasing the limit for truck purchases would have the dual benefit of positively altering the age of the fleet.
"The ATA has suggested a threshold of $450,000 as this would ensure 100 per cent deductibility for most - if not all heavy-duty trucks in Australia," Mr Maguire said.
"We fundamentally believe this would be a massive win - not only for the economy - but for the broader community as well."
Mr Hacking said HVIA supported the higher threshold, subject to conditional eligibility.
"We believe that our proposed eligibility criteria for the extended incentives, conditional on safety features, provides the opportunity for the biggest increase in safety and productivity in Australian heavy vehicle history," he said.
Mr Hacking said the scheme and the accompanying 50 per cent bonus depreciation schedule had less than 10 days from their announcement to the dramatic escalation of the pandemic.
"In order to kick-start the economy and increase business confidence the instant asset write-off scheme needs to be extended until at least 31 December 2020," Mr Hacking said.
"Our survey results show that operators and manufacturers did not have time to utilise the stimulus."