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Thursday, September 29, 2016
UPU News: Postal development gets a boost
UPU members have agreed to accelerate global postal development by making changes to the funding models of the Quality of Service Fund (QSF).
During the ongoing 26th UPU Congress in Istanbul, Turkey, members agreed to implement a new funding model that will ensure the sustainability of the QSF for improving the quality of postal services in developing countries.
Under the new model, the UPU will collect more contributions and build a ‘Common Fund’ that will be used to develop more large-scale global projects for the improvement of ecommerce and postal supply chain capabilities.
Delegates supported this new direction for the future of the Quality of Service Fund, urging member countries to help developing Posts transform and match the rest of the postal industry in order to create a sustainable seamless postal network.
The Chilean delegation noted that many less developed countries do not have the resources to implement the International Postal System (IPS), the UPU’s integrated international mail management application, meaning they are unable to take advantage of the e-commerce opportunity.
“A chain is only as strong as its weakest link and the role of the QSF is to strengthen all of the links,” noted the representative from Barbados.
Countries also agreed to extend the QSF until 2028.
Funding support was also a concern for Congress Committee 5, which examines proposals regarding postal financial services.
The committee debated the UPU’s proposed new vision for postal payment services, which calls for the UPU to set up an interconnection platform to allow designated operators to exchange payment services with wider postal sector players.
This interconnection would be facilitated through the UPU’s International Financial System, an application facilitating the exchange of international money orders.
The goal is to modernize and extend the reach of the postal payments network to promote global financial inclusion through the Post.
“The new vision focuses on bringing an extended range of payment services to all citizens of the world,” said Mr. Abhas, Assistant Director General at India Post.
Countries voiced their support for the new vision, sharing their postal payment services success stories.
One such example was Tunisia, which noted financial gains after modernizing its postal payment services offering. These services now make up 70 per cent of the Post’s revenue.
In light of the new vision, the UPU will review necessary changes to the Postal Payments Services Agreement (PPSA), the UPU intergovernmental legal instrument, throughout the 2017 – 2020 work cycle. The changes will be submitted next Congress, after which the new vision will be implemented.