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By Vukosi Maluleke

Digital Journalist

SAMTC ramping up the fight against tyre dumping and illicit trade

The South African Tyre Manufacturer's Conference wants stricter industry regulation.

Old tyres and illicit tyre trade have made it onto the South African Tyre Manufacture’s Conference’s (SAMTC) priority list.

The SAMTC is calling for a systematic process to address the processing of end-of-life tyres, and smuggling of illicit tyres.

This comes after the organisation successfully advocated for the introduction of anti-dumping duties on unfairly traded tyres from China last year.

READ MORE: SA tyre manufacturers potentially exposed to dumping from China

Building on its victory through its Illicit Trade Tyre Forum, SAMTC said it would take a hard stance against smuggling, under-invoicing, and the use of illegitimate freight forwarders.

SAMTC managing executive Ndu Chala said gaps in trade regulation posed a significant safety risk for road commuters.

Chala is also concerned about the future of the local tyre industry, explaining that illicit trade had a potentially destructive domino effect.

“Illicit trade of tyres has severe repercussions on jobs, plant capacity planning, and the integrity of our industry, as well as consumer safety,” he said.

ALSO READ: Unwavering efforts aim to eliminate illicit auto parts trade

Getting key players on board

SAMTC believes the future of the tyre industry hinges on the promotion of trade among “ethical companies”.

The organisation has reached out to key industry players in an attempt to curb illicit trade.

“We are proposing an industry pledge, starting with our four local tyre manufacturers – Bridgestone Southern Africa, Continental Tyre South Africa, Goodyear South Africa and Sumitomo Rubber South Africa – and extending to dealers, to ensure ethical practices from sourcing to distribution,” Chala explained.

Meanwhile, the country’s entry-points are also a pressing concern for SAMTC, requiring urgent intervention.

“Recognising the significance of porous ports and harbours as entry points for illicitly traded tyres, the SATMC also intends exploring a partnership with Transnet to address these vulnerabilities,” said Chala.

ALSO READ: Illicit tobacco trade thrives: is it government’s fault?

Waste management

Meanwhile, waste management is also a pain-point for the organisation, hence its efforts to lobby with tyre dealers to promote proper storage for waste tyres.

According to SAMTC the South African Bureau of Standards (SABS) is expected to issue the SANS 1633 Standard to address tyre mutilation and dealer responsibility between March and June.

A signed Waste Tyre Management Plan is anticipated by the end of March. In the interim, the SAMTC is working with the Waste Management Bureau and the police.

“As the SATMC we have been advocating strongly around having a clear roadmap in place to drive improvements and sustainability in both collection and processing of tyre waste.

“This initiative involves collaborative efforts with tyre dealers to promote proper storage practices for waste tyres.

“Simultaneously, the SATMC is actively exploring commercial opportunities for waste tyres, aiming to foster enterprise development and job creation within a circular economy,” Chala said.

Buying local

SAMTC launched the #DrivingLocal initiative last year to promote the importance of buying locally manufactured tyres.

The campaign is geared towards consumer awareness about the benefits of buying South African-made tyres, with emphasis on quality, job creation and economic growth.

“We want to protect local jobs, ensure consumer safety, and contribute to a thriving automotive sector,” Chala said.

ALSO READ: Government backs campaign to tackle illegal auto parts trade

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