European road freight companies are expected to see a 17% decrease in annual turnover this year due to the Covid-19 crisis, according to industry estimates.
The calculation comes in a new report, Covid-19 Impacts on the Road Transport Industry, from the International Road Union (IRU).
The decline amounts to €64 bn across Europe. Worldwide, the estimated average decline for road goods transport is 18%, or €551 bn, with China, Argentina and Iran expected to see reductions of above 30%.
The IRU has now put together a 10-point recovery plan including financial and non-financial measures for governments and banks to support the sector.
IRU secretary general Umberto de Pretto said: “Road transport services are fundamental to economies and communities everywhere. These new findings are alarming. Every single road transport operator that goes bankrupt will impact the movement of people and goods.”
The estimations are based on an in-depth survey of IRU members, as well as macroeconomic research and analysis.
According to the IRU, movement restrictions, border controls and closures, and health screening have all disrupted supply chains. The general economic slowdown has also been a factor in the decline in road freight levels.
Estimated declines in passenger transport are even greater. Passenger transport companies in Europe are forecast to see a 57% decline, or €81 bn.
Mr de Pretto said: “We have seen many governments adjust regulations and announce recovery packages, but the detail for road transport operators is generally vague.
“Our research points to the immediate need for measures targeted to the industry that match the scale of the current situation. Even at the peak of the crisis, road transport remained flexible, operational and continued to play its unique role. Now, global recovery efforts are endangered without clear government action to support road transport operators.”
How has the pandemic affected your company’s turnover this year?