Everest Wealth warns that attacks on trucks will have very serious economic consequences for the country. This private investment and wealth management company even labels it as “economic sabotage”.
“Over the past few years, hundreds, if not thousands, of trucks have been targeted and either looted and damaged, or set on fire. The road freight transport sector is a key contributor to the country’s economy and attacks on trucks have a ripple effect on the bigger economic picture,” says Thys van Zyl, head of product development at Everest Wealth.
No less than 21 trucks were set on fire in Mpumalanga, KwaZulu-Natal and Limpopo within a few days.
Van Zyl says attacks of this nature not only cause delivery schedules to be disrupted, but also result in truck owners suffering huge losses, transport companies finally having to close their doors and insurance premiums rising.
This while consumers will finally have to pay for the laugh.
“This is economic sabotage,” says Van Zyl.
“It’s just unbelievable that after so many years and so many promises, the government still can’t stop it. The attacks on trucks are possibly the last nail in the coffin when it comes to South Africa’s problems with logistics and freight transport.”
Van Zyl warns that South Africa could even lose its status as the so-called gateway to Africa and scare off investors even further.
“This affects business confidence and foreign investment which has already been severely damaged due to various missteps and a lack of action by the government. It seems that the private sector will once again have to intervene itself, as it has done many times before, and this will result in significant costs that do not bode well for consumers who are increasingly financially strapped.”
Van Zyl says the government must intervene urgently.
“Turnover is already crippling the economy and the country cannot afford to target the trucking industry, a lifeblood of the economy. The government must also introduce and establish reforms to remove the country’s logistical constraints so that the economy can grow.”