Currie European

The MD of Currie European has warned that customer rates must increase in 2014, to keep pace with the growing cost of running a haulage business.

It comes as the Dumfries-based haulier saw a fall in pre-tax profit for the year ending 31 December 2012 to £336,667, from £657,562 in the previous financial year, despite a rise in turnover to £46.6m, from £46.3m in 2011.

Stephen Turner, MD at Currie European, told “We continue to trade satisfactorily so far during 2013 but are finding trading conditions every bit as difficult as the previous year.

"Just about everything has, or is, going up in price but customer rate increases over the past two years are a rarity - that simply has to change for 2014.”

He also said that UK load volumes for the year were higher than anticipated assisted by “strong growth” from haulage consortium Harlequin Logistics.

On Friday Harlequin, which also includes Jack Richards & Son; John Raymond Transport, R Swain and Sons and Prestons of Potto as members, said it had signed five new contracts so far this year, and expects to close 2013 with turnover in excess of £10m.

“European full load export volumes remain lower than we would like, especially in Scotland, but our import volumes are strong and significantly better rated,” Turner added.