What started as a horse and carriage movement some 84 years ago, the logistics industry in Malaysia has grown in leaps and bounds and with the PLUS highway opening in 1983 the movement of good and services took a major leap forward.
The biggest challenge for the industry has been overloading by non member logistic operators who overload their trucks daily and this allows them to earn more money per trip which indirectly gives member truckers a dis-advantage as they have to carry the load as per the given requirements which earns them less for every trip done.
Enforcement by JPJ (road transport department) will reduce overloading and reduce the price advantage that overloading truckers have against rule abiding truckers. The enforment by JPJ is lacking and needs more aggression to reduce and remove overloading for good.
The logistics industry in neighboring Thailand has moved far forward due to tough/strict enforcement on overloading where drivers found to be driving overloaded trucks will be fined and or even jailed.
In Australia, the government is even stricter where drivers are only allowed a fixed number of hours to drive in a day to prevent overworked drivers from having accidents while moving cargo. These are some of the enforcements that should be done to provide a fair playing field and also reduce accidents and tarmac damage with heavy laden trucks.
The NSLOA is also hoping that Malaysian government initiatives will be provided to encourage more Malaysians to become professional truck drivers. Currently on average 3,600 new trucks come into the industry every year but there are only a fraction of new drivers coming into the business. This means, the current pool of drivers are playing ‘musical chairs’ as they move from company to company which leaves employers constantly looking for drivers. Training and incentive schemes are needed to be provided to encourage new drivers coming into the industry.