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FTA teams with Australian horticultural organisation

The Freight and Trade Alliance (FTA) says it has joined the Australian Horticultural Exporters’ and Importers’ Association (AHEIA) to reform international shipping and air cargo supply chains.

The Australian Peak Shippers Association (APSA) has also allied with the AHEIA.

Paul Zalai, Director FTA and Secretariat APSA says he has welcomed AHEIA into a growing alliance of peak industry bodies that already includes the Australian Cotton Shippers’ Association, Australian International Movers Association, Australian Council of Wool Exporters and Processors, and more.

“Together we now have an opportunity to make a real difference to address the need for shipping competition reform, the winding back of stevedore and empty container park terminal access charges, regulation of container detention practices, biosecurity process review, minimum service levels and to drive key infrastructure investment,” Paul says.

He notes there is a need to expand the collective voice of peak industry bodies because they will help achieve much needed reform, particularly as the Productivity Commission will release its draft report on Australia’s Maritime Logistics Systems soon.

“It is increasingly difficult for our members to remain commercially viable with these current operational conditions,” Lesley Shield, Chief Executive Officer AHEIA, says.

“We look forward to working alongside our peers across other trade commodities in constructive dialogue with government, regulators, and commerce to improve processes across our international trade supply chains.”

Lesley says increased shipping freight rates, lack of information regarding schedules and last-minute changes are causing significant operational disruptions for horticultural shippers.

Limited airfreight capacity, which is expected to continue, and the essential requirement to maintain the export of fresh produce to key markets are some of the significant challenges.

“A well-regulated economy will help Australia to prosper,” Paul says.

“Australia has world class manufacturers and producers who are supported by skilled customs brokers and freight forwarders ready to take advantage of the opportunities created by free trade agreements and those economies recovering from COVID-19.

“These opportunities will not be fully realised while physical access to market and costs of trade are prohibitive.”

For more information on the Freight and Trade Alliance, click here.

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