truckers gear up for mass protest on monday to demand diesel price cap - Truckers gear up for mass protest on Monday to demand diesel price cap

Thousands of truckers in Thailand are gearing up for a nationwide strike tomorrow (Monday), to pressure the government into meeting their demand for the price of diesel to be capped at 25 baht/litre.

Thanasant Kulaketpetranont, deputy secretary-general of the Northeastern Cargo Transport Association, said today that about 20% of the cargo trucks affiliated with the Land Transport Federation of Thailand will stop operations and park at their truck depots, but not on the roadsides to avoid causing inconvenience to other motorists.

He said that, if their demand is not met by the government, the federation may resort to increasing transportation charges, which will affect business operators, traders and consumers, who are at the receiving end of any increase in the price of consumer products.

The federation has already proposed that the Finance Ministry waive the excise tax charged on each litre diesel sold at the pump, to reduce prices.

This was, however, opposed by the ministry on the grounds that it will distort the oil pricing mechanism, as retail prices are automatically adjusted in line with global crude oil prices. Instead, the ministry proposed an increase to the biofuel content to reduce diesel prices.