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INDUSTRY PULSE: Trucking industry dominating transborder trade

OTTAWA, Ont. -- More than 53% of Canadian exports and 79% of imports were moved by truck in 2003, according to data...

OTTAWA, Ont. — More than 53% of Canadian exports and 79% of imports were moved by truck in 2003, according to data released by Statistics Canada yesterday.

Transborder movements accounted for 22% of total shipments and 47% of revenues. Carriers hauled 8.7 million shipments across the CanadaUS border in 2003, with freight totalling more than 85 million tonnes. These transborder shipments generated $8.0 billion in revenues.

The most frequent commodities moved to or from the United States, other than miscellaneous transported products, were vehicles including parts and accessories.

Domestic shipments accounted for 72% of this total tonnage and 53% of revenues. Carriers hauled 32 million shipments within Canada, weighing 219.8 million tonnes. Domestic shipments generated $8.8 billion in revenues.

The Statistics Canada report also found that the roughly 2,200 long distance for-hire trucking companies based in Canada that had annual operating revenues of $1 million or more generated $16.8 billion in revenues, an increase of 7.5% from 2002. These long distance carriers hauled 305 million metric tonnes of freight in 2003, up 4.0%.

In total, the transportation and warehousing sector employed over 610,000 people in 2003. The trucking industry was by far the largest employer accounting for almost 27% or 165,000 of the people working in the sector.

Data showed that carriers were generally profitable in 2003.

For-hire trucking companies generated $20.5 billion in total revenues and had $19.6 billion in total expenses. The overall operating profit margin was lower in 2003 at 4.4%, compared with 5.1% in 2002. However, operating profit margins for carriers with annual revenues between $1 million and $2 million and those with annual revenues greater than $25 million increased between 2002 and 2003.

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Truck News is Canada's leading trucking newspaper - news and information for trucking companies, owner/operators, truck drivers and logistics professionals working in the Canadian trucking industry.
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