Truck driver disdains monthly voucher of 400 reais; Is there a new strike coming?
The government’s proposal does not resonate with the category, which continues in meetings to define whether there will be protests across the country; decision should be announced by the end of the week
The proposal to create a monthly allowance of 400 reais for the truck drivers has been criticized by the category. Discussed since 2019, the idea came back to the fore earlier this week, after meetings between the government and congressional leaders, and could be voted on next week. Representatives of truck drivers, however, say that the initiative should not mitigate the impacts of diesel and gasoline price increases.
“This aid will not serve as refreshment”, says José Roberto Stringasci, president of the National Transport Association of Brazil (ANTB), which helped organize the 2018 strike. “The truck driver today easily spends 2,000 reais on diesel fuel per trip, so 400 reais a month doesn’t make much difference”. The category has been holding talks with workers from other sectors to study forms of protest against fuel price readjustments and the price parity practiced by Petrobras. Any manifestations should be disclosed by the end of the week.
In the last 12 months, the rise in diesel reached 52.6%. The last increase of 14.26% took place on June 17th. Subsequently, there was an adjustment in the value of freight by 5%, according to the National Association of Cargo Transport and Logistics (NTC&Logística), which represents 15,000 transport companies. The rise in the cost of fuel and transport has put pressure on the inflation: in the last 12 months, the rise in prices reached 10.58%, according to Fundação Getúlio Vargas.
It is in this scenario that meetings between groups of truck drivers and government and congressional leaders have taken place. With inflation putting pressure on the economy – and in an election year – the intention is to create from vouchers for transporters to measures capable of alleviating the increase in fuel prices. The voucher for truck drivers can be included in the proposed amendment to the Constitution (PEC) regarding the compensation of almost 30 billion reais granted to states that agree to zero the Tax on Circulation of Goods and Provision of Services (ICMS) for diesel, gas kitchen and natural gas. The idea is to vote on the PEC next week.
In the United States, President Joe Biden called for a suspension of the collection of federal tax about gasoline. The request was made to Congress on Wednesday, the 22nd.
“Biden is urging Congress and states to take additional legislative steps to provide relief to American consumers who have been hit by Putin’s rising fuel prices,” the White House said in a statement.
Since the beginning of the war in Ukraine and the sanctions on Russia, the international increase in the price of oil has reached 37%. It is expected to reach US$125 in the coming months, as demand rises in China, according to consultancy Kpler. By the end of the year, you should park in the $115 or $120 range.