Trailers, busses stand to lose if banned from Saudi — Dawood

Trucks Truck
Trailers queue up on Jordan’s border post. (Photo: Jordan News)
AMMAN — Hundreds of food trailer and passenger bus owners protested against a Saudi decision, which will potentially ban their vehicles from crossing the eastern desert border overland to neighboring Saudi Arabia.اضافة اعلان

The Saudi authorities have been debating the move since last April. But on October 11, Riyadh announced that as of February 1, 2023, trailers with an operational lifespan of more than 20 years, and passenger busses that are older than 10 years will be prohibited from crossing the Saudi border from Jordan.

The decision is expected to inflict heavy losses on bus and truck owners, who were already dealt a blow during the COVID-19 pandemic, when commercial activity was halted under lockdowns.

President of the Jordan Truck Owners Association Mohammad Dawood told Jordan News that the protesters sought to “tell the government that truck owners will be gravely harmed, and that it should act to save this sector from an expected collapse”.

Nearly 6,000 trailer owners would be significantly harmed, should the decision be implemented, Dawood stated.

He said that the trailer owners want the government to contact its peer in Riyadh, and have it delay the execution of its planned ban by five years. He maintained that trailer owners also want the Saudis to facilitate visa and entry procedures for them, and their vehicles.

He recommended that the Jordanian government “provide tax exemptions for those, who will have to replace their vehicles to meet the Saudi conditions”.

“We demand a full tax exemption for a chance to replace the old trailers,” Dawood elaborated.

Ministry of Transport Spokesperson Ali Odeibat told Jordan News that the ministries of transportation in Jordan and Saudi Arabia agreed to carry out discussions between the Land Transport Regulatory Commission (LTRC), and its Saudi counterpart in this regard.

For her part, LTRC Spokesperson Abla Weshah told Jordan News that the commission has not received any response from the Saudi side. Weshah refused to elaborate on the discussions further.

Overland cargo movement between Jordan and Saudi Arabia makes up 58 percent of the total land freight in Jordan, according to statistics by the Jordan Chamber of Industry.

JCI statistics also show that over 180,000 entry and exit permits are recorded annually between the two countries.

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