Uninterrupted car supply is one of the important factors in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.

The International Road Transport Union (IRU) is calling on governments to help transport companies during the pandemic. With every passing hour, the COVID-19 coronavirus situation is increasingly affecting the daily lives of individuals, businesses and governments. One of the main tasks for the road transport sector is to maintain uninterrupted supply of essentials such as food and medical supplies.

The logistics business does its best to cope with the difficult situation when rules and restrictions change quickly and often in a random or inconsistent manner. However, business is serious about social responsibility in order to continue to perform as well as possible in times of crisis.

The International Road Transport Union (IRU) estimates global car activity to be reduced to 20% in 2020, depending on how long the situation persists. This could result in a global loss of $ 800 billion for logistics operators. Almost 6% of all people in the world are employed in road transport, mainly in small and medium-sized companies. Such enterprises, because of their size, cannot easily cope with external shocks such as the economic impact of COVID-19.

The economic burden is great and affects both employees and business owners. To keep road transport networks functioning, the IRU calls on governments and authorities, as well as banks and financial institutions, to take various temporary steps to ease the burden of the crisis on operators.

Here are the key economic and social preventative measures from the IRU:

Reduce the restrictions on drivers' work and rest periods to provide efficient logistics for critical goods (food and medicines) and allow drivers to leave the affected areas or quarantine areas as soon as possible and return home.
Remove timeout restrictions to ensure that delivery can take place at a safer time, such as at night.
Facilitate credit and mortgage repayments from financial institutions, especially for large transport loans, as well as the timing of payment of VAT and taxes.
Reduce or reduce the fare and tolls for trucks and buses.
Establish support programs for temporarily unemployed road transport workers.
Avoid unilateral action by appropriate authorities to facilitate the transboundary movement of goods (especially important items such as food and medicine).
Provide emergency financial assistance programs to affected businesses to prevent bankruptcy."Maintaining open supply chains for motor vehicles and mobile networks is crucial to helping all of us cope with the COVID-19 pandemic in the coming weeks and beyond." - says IRU Secretary General Humberto de Pretto

He added that for this we need to protect workers and companies that are the mainstay of road transport, and keep transport links open, where and for as long as possible, in the affected areas, so that essential goods and people can get there where they need to be. "