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Hard border would be devastating for Irish trade – says FTAI – HGV Ireland.com

on Aug 16, 17 • by • with No Comments

The Freight Transport Association of Ireland (FTAI), which represents operators across all modes of freight transport in the Republic, has spoken out strongly in favour of the UK government’s recommendation that there is no hard border established between the North and the Republic of Ireland.   Aidan Flynn,…

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The Freight Transport Association of Ireland (FTAI), which represents operators across all modes of freight transport in the Republic, has spoken out strongly in favour of the UK government’s recommendation that there is no hard border established between the North and the Republic of Ireland.   Aidan Flynn, FTAI’s general manager, today (16 August 2017) called on both sides around the negotiating table to keep the issue at the heart of conversations moving forwards, to ensure that Irish industry continues to trade freely cross border and with the UK mainland.

“With over 6,000 HGV movements between the north and the Republic each day, even the slightest delay at the border could have catastrophic effects on industry,” he said.  “Cross-border trade with both the north and mainland UK destinations is key to the growth of the Republic’s economy, and any negotiation which adds time and thus cost to the movement of goods and components could be a disaster to Ireland’s future prosperity.  Our members are adamant that the border arrangements should remain as they are, if at all possible, and we urge those negotiating in Brussels to keep Ireland front and centre as the talks progress, to protect this situation.”

Trade is a key driver of economic success for Ireland, with the UK purchasing 50% of Ireland’s beef exports, 42% of food and drink exports and 55% of Irish timber and construction goods.  In contrast, currently the UK exports more to Ireland than it does to China, India and Brazil, and Ireland’s economy is heavily reliant on UK goods, to the tune of E16.6 billion in 2016.

“As an island on the periphery of Europe, Ireland deserves to be given due consideration during the negotiations, not least because the loss of the EU “land bridge” between Ireland and mainland Europe could have a serious impact on transit times and costs, which could be devastating for Irish industry.  At FTAI we believe it is imperative that the UK and EU negotiation teams put Irish considerations first in their Brexit trade talks, in order to achieve workable solutions that will keep the Irish economy buoyant moving forwards.”

To outline the position of the Irish logistics industry, FTAI has today published its Supply Chain Management briefing note, which outlines the potential impacts of Brexit on the Republic’s Supply Chain, as well as highlighting ways to develop a “Trusted Trader” solution.  This would ensure that there is a basis for efficient movement of goods that will not result in delays and tailbacks across the Irish border.  To obtain a copy, please visit www.ftai.ie or call 01 844 7516.


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Plucky Junaidah holds her own in a man’s world of truck driving

— Photo courtesy of Volvo Trucks Malaysia— Photo courtesy of Volvo Trucks MalaysiaKUALA LUMPUR, Aug 16 — Five years ago, a plucky 27-year old lady decided to try her hand at driving a truck, and decided that it would be her career despite the industry being dominated by men.

Today, Junaidah Ibrahim works alongside her husband who also drives a truck for the same company, Benua Haulage Sdn Bhd, part of Sin Hock soon Group.

Junaidah puts in around eight to nine hours a day driving her Volvo truck to ensure that goods are delivered to customers on time. However, this doting mother of three children stresses that being extra careful while driving on the road is her utmost priority in the job as she has a family to go back to at the end of the day.

Registering as a participant in the Volvo Trucks Malaysia’s annual Fuelwatch Challenge which returned to Malaysia for the eighth consecutive year, Junaidah took part in the preliminary round in Prai and has secured a place in the finals. She believes that her focus on the task at hand and her driving skills helped her to outperform many of the male truck drivers.

Junaidah has created history for beingthe very first female truck driver to qualify for the finals in the Volvo Trucks Malaysia’s Fuelwatch Challenge, and this year, the finals shall be held in Shah Alam on 25th and 25th August , 2017.

Junaidah is also popular among her customers who are pleased not only with her professionalism but are also impressed to see a female truck driver appearing at their doorsteps. 

Commenting on her job, Junaidah said, “I am the only female truck driver in my company and I couldn’t be more proud of my job despite the fact that truck driving is known to be a male-dominated profession. The support that I get from my husband, who is also my colleague, and the confidence my employer and customers have in me are indeed very encouraging. I’m glad to have found my niche and have proved that gender stereotyping can definitely be broken.”

Apart from being a female truck driver, which is an already extremely rare case in Malaysia, unlike in some Western countries where there is a higher ratio of female drivers, Junaidah also towers above her male peers in terms of license qualification. She has both rigid and container truck driving licenses, which is not the norm even amongst the general population of male truck drivers.

Junaidah will be competing with seven other male finalists in the final round of Volvo Fuelwatch Challenge 2017 in Shah Alam on 26th August, including attending a special training session by a Volvo Trucks’ Driver Trainer to further enhance their skills.

The other seven male finalists are Ruslan Ab Ghani from Perwakilan Cekap Sdn Bhd (Port Klang), Jamal B. Embong from Prifaria Sdn Bhd (Kuantan), Ahmad Sulaiman from Konsortium PD Sdn Bhd (Port Klang), Mohd Sufian bin Sahari from Multimodal Freight Sdn Bhd (Port Klang), Kaspul Anwar bin Abdul Karim from Prifaria Sdn Bhd (Prai), Tan Eng Hin from Lima Bintang Logistics Sdn Bhd (Prai) and Firdausbin Salim from Swift Logistics Sdn Bhd (Johor Bahru).

The champion will have the opportunity to represent Malaysia and participate in the Drivers Fuel Challenge – World Final in Sweden from 18th to 22nd September 2017, that judges and more importantly, teaches skill, concentration, knowledge, and discipline.

“I’m absolutely pleased to be the first female truck driver in Malaysia to take part in the final round of Volvo Fuelwatch Challenge. The Challenge is a great platform for us, regardless of gender, to prove that we can perform at the highest level if we apply the right skills. And of course, it will be such a great achievement for all women out there if I can win the trophy, fingers crossed!”, said Junaidah.

The competition, which first started in Europe as a concept for achieving maximum efficiency, is moduled based on local market demands and industry landscape; for Malaysia it will mainly concentrate on three key areas; Driver Development, Fuel Maintenance and Dynafleet or Telematics.

Since its commencement in Malaysia in 2010, the Volvo Fuelwatch Challenge has so far mentored more than 6,000 truck drivers from all over the country on how to enhance their driving competency and behaviour to be more fuel efficient and safer drivers on the roads. The number of truck drivers who participated in this year’s competition saw an increase of 19% compared to last year