Truck drivers in Somaliland, Taiwan’s most recent diplomatic ally, complain of a few “well connected people” who upended the trucking business model and now transport vegetables directly from Ethiopia to Hargeisa. The standard business practice enabled trucks at Wajale Dry Port to transport vegetables from Ethiopia to Hargeisa.
“As (a) truck owners’ cooperative we express our dissatisfaction with the policy to grant one Habesha man, who owns fifty trucks, the privilege to transport vegetables directly from Ethiopia to Hargeisa while all our trucks are parked there without jobs” said a spokesman for Himilo Truck Owners Cooperative at Wajale.
“The Somaliland Ministry of Commerce did not consult trucking business owners at Wajale Dry Port. While competition is in the interest of consumers, it is questionable to grant trucking licenses to a few well connected people who struck deals with Ethiopian truckers to transport vegetables directly to Hargeisa” said a business lecturer in Hargeisa.
“Somaliland truck drivers pay more tax. That should have been taken into account before the Commerce Ministry went ahead with the decision to give licenses to Ethiopian truck owners who partnered with some brokers in Hargeisa” the lecturer added.
This article first appeared in the © Puntland Post, 2020 and is republished with permission.