International News

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April 22, 2017

NEW ZEALAND: BusinessScoopPostal Workers Union of Aotearoa charges NZ Post with serious misconduct over mail delays The latest report of standard letters taking up to 2 weeks to be delivered across the country has led the Postal Workers Union to charge NZ Post with serious misconduct. This is the same charge that the company can lay against its own employees for the “non delivery of deliverable mail” – serious misconduct under the “Conduct and Performance Expectations” of the posties’ Collective Employment Contract. A postie can be dismissed for failure to meet the company’s performance expectations. NZ Post has begun to instruct posties in some branches to give priority to the delivery of parcels and to bring back undelivered letters at the end of their working day. The Union is getting reports from posties who are upset that they are bringing letters back to the office which can lead to delays of several days.

NEW ZEALAND: StuffIn a quest to find out exactly how fast, or slow, the postal service is, Stuff reporters Catherine Groenestein and Jane Matthews sent letters from Hawera in Taranaki to destinations ranging from Kaitaia to places as far afield as Invercargill. None of the letters arrived within NZ Post's target of delivering 95 per cent of Standard Post mail within three working days after it was posted. A letter posted to an Hawera address, which was less than 200 metres away from the postbox it was mailed from, took eight days to arrive, yet another letter went from Hawera to Winton, near Invercargill, in the same amount of time.

TUNISHA: The Tunisian and Palestinian posts inked a bilateral co-operation agreement on the fringes of a visit paid by Palestinian Telecommunication and Information Technology Minister Allam Mousa to Tunisia, announces the Tunisian Post in a press release Friday. This partnership agreement seeks to foster partnership between the Tunisian and Palestinian posts in the digital services field such as M-money services by using the electronic payment platform the “e-Dinar,” services related to electronic trade and financial services (postal savings, electronic mandates and postal insurance services). This partnership will also help boost co-operation between the two institutions in matters of postal services notably direct mailing, Rapid Post, postal packages and printing of postal stamps and related products.

April 20, 2017

INDIA: TheHinduCustomers of some post offices in the southern suburbs are unable to carry out daily transactions for over a week now owing to poor network connectivity. With the problem persisting for over five days, citizens are queueing up at post offices for hours sometimes even before the work hours. Raman R., a BSNL pensioner, says that the post offices at Hasthinapuram, Radhanagar and Bharathipuram in Chromepet have poor broadband connectivity, which leads to delays in cash payment for various saving schemes and bill payments. While many customers, including senior citizens, returned without completing their work in these post offices, savings bank account holders were the worst-hit.

QATAR: GulfTimes: Qatar Postal Service Company (Q-Post) has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Turkish Post in the area of e-commerce. Under the agreement, Q-Post and Turkish Post have agreed on developing a roadmap —designing a product sales plan from Turkey to Qatar and vice-versa and benefiting their customers based in both countries.  Building on its business growth, Q-Post is currently going through a holistic modernisation process involving its postal services and products, according to a press statement.

April 18, 2017

INDIA: DeccanHeraldThe postal department’s new initiative appears to have helped to revive the letter writing. Traveling Letter Box (TLB), an initiative of department of post, promises to deliver the letter on the same day for short distances. All one has to do is to drop the letter in a box in one of the five short-haul trains.

IRELAND: IrishMirrorIreland's leading independent postal service CityPost have launched a new nationwide business postal service called PostPICK-UP. CityPOST is offering free postal collection from businesses and delivery to anywhere in Ireland, or in 200 countries around the world. Postal price increases were recently announced by An Post but CityPOST charges just 79c per letter delivery, 21% less than the universal provider.

ISRAEL: PRNewsWireMySize Inc., developer of proprietary, smartphone measurement applications, announced today a new cooperation agreement has been signed with the Israeli Post. MySize solution for the courier market, will provide a solution to measure all types of packages using only a smartphone. Based on the package size, the user will be quoted a shipping price and picture of the package dimension​.​ In addition, The Israel Post has developed relationships in the online fashion apparel markets with fashion retailers and contracted with MySize for solutions to ship the correct size with using our "TrueSize" application.

April 17, 2017

UNITED KINGDOM: WiganTodayPostal staff are to be used at the forefront of the on-going fight against the rising tide of scam mail. Over the last few years there has been a huge increase in the number of people targeted by these conmen, often resulting in much misery for the victims, many of whom are elderly residents. As part of its ongoing battle against the fraudsters, Royal Mail will begin pro-actively contacting - by Special Delivery - households it believes are receiving high volumes of scam mail. The latest anti-scam initiative will initially focus on most-impacted customers and will be extended in due course. Royal Mail will block and impound scam mail at its major distribution centres before it reaches the customer’s letterbox. Legitimate business and personal mail will continue to be delivered to the customer in the usual way.

April 14, 2017

UNITED EMIRATES: ArabianBusinessSharjah has announced the start of the roll-out of a postal code system for addresses across the emirate.The introduction of the Postal Code System (PCS) is in line with the emirate’s goal to improve the level of services provided to the public, said the Sharjah Urban Planning Council (SUPC). It said PCS aims to raise the efficiency of postal services in the emirate and is linked to the geographical information system as per international standards.

UNITED KINGDOM: ReutersBritain's Royal Mail will close its defined benefit pension scheme at the end of March 2018 after a review found it would need to more than double annual contributions to over 1 billion pounds ($1.3 billion) to keep the plan running. Royal Mail, the British postal service privatised in 2013, said it was one of only a few major companies that still had employees in a defined benefit scheme, a type of pension that pays out according to final salary and length of service. Around 90,000 Royal Mail workers are in the plan, whose closure to new members in 2008 resulted in about 40,000 workers joining a less generous defined contribution plan.The company, which pays around 400 million pounds a year into the defined benefits scheme, said it was currently in surplus, but it expected the surplus to run out in 2018.

April 13, 2017

CHINA: The National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) today posted a notice jointly issued with the Ministry of Finance and the State Post Administration replacing the system of government price-setting for package delivery with a system of government price “guidance” in the form of price ceilings for packages weighing under 10 kilogram and over 167 grams per cubic millimeter delivered by China Post. A six-tier pricing system will be introduced based on distances for intra-provincial and inter-provincial package delivery by China Post. At the same time, China Post is required to abide by its universal service obligations and provide address-delivery of packages weighing under 5 kilograms for urban areas above the county-level and township government seats, and centralized depot delivery for other townships and villages. The new pricing standards will take effect on April 20.

UNITED KINGDOM: FinancialTimesRoyal Mail is facing the threat of industrial action following its decision to close its defined benefit pension scheme, affecting 90,000 members. The privatised UK postal operator announced on Thursday that its £7.4bn defined benefit scheme will close to future accruals after March 2018, saying that “there is no affordable solution to keeping the plan open in its current form”.  It joins a succession of other large British employers ending ‘DB’ arrangements, which guarantee a retirement income and were once the norm of pension provision but are now increasingly rare. The Communication Workers’ Union, which represents its blue-collar staff, “strongly condemned” the move and sent a shot across the company’s bows. A motion will go to the union’s conference in two weeks asking for branches to endorse a ballot. This raises the possibility of the first national strikes at Royal Mail since it was privatised in 2013 through a controversial stock market flotation. 

April 12, 2017

TRINIDAD & TOBAGO: NewsDayIn the coming weeks, there could be delays in the delivery of mail, after postal workers promised yesterday to continue protesting if TTPost does not meet with their union to discuss health and safety issues as well as poor governance of the corporation.Yesterday, over 100 workers lined the pavement in the front of TT Post’s head quarters in Piarco, waving placards and demanding workers get proper governance. David Forbes, General Secretary of the Postal Workers Union said workers are dissatisfied with the overall governance of the corporation and alleged bad Industrial Relations practices.

April 11, 2017

CANADA: BenZingaCanadian Internet of Postal Things Company Snaile Inc. has been shortlisted with two other companies in the Innovation category for the 2017 World Post and Parcel Awards. The company received the nomination for its proprietary postal box (check and notify-the-Cloud) IoT devices used in first and last mile postal applications. This same technology, which secures automated parcel lockers and turns street letter boxes, P.O. Boxes and traditional parcel lockers into smart devices, has already been awarded the 2016 Digital Innovation of the Year Award by Postal Technology International.

GERMANY: Post&ParcelDeutsche Post DHL Group has announced that it will double the production capacity of its own StreetScooter electric vehicles from 10,000 to as many as 20,000 by the end of the year. As previously reported, Deutsche Post DHL Group is now also selling its own electric vehicles – which have so far been optimized for postal operations and delivery purposes – to third parties. The company sees “municipal authorities, strategic partners and large fleet customers in Germany and the rest of Europe” as among the most likely potential buyers of the StreetScooter vehicles.The company aims to at least double – from the current number of about 2,500 vehicles – its own StreetScooter fleet for letter and parcel deliveries this year.

INDIA: IndiaTimes: Department of Posts has joined hands with State Bank of India to promote 'SBI buddy e-wallet' and POS machines for cashless transactions at post office counters while booking speed post and registered post items. Installation of SBI Buddy e-wallet and POS machines will facilitate economy through digital payments/cashless transactions in the post offices. 

NIGERIA: TheNation:The Federal Government Tuesday vowed to reform the postal service system in Nigeria to improve its quality and revenue generation potential. Minister of Communications, Mr Abdur-Raheem Adebayo Shittu, who stated this in Lagos, said the government would ensure an enabling environment for the Nigerian Postal Service (NIPOST) by facilitating the passage of the Postal Reform Bill.

POLAND: RTEMore than 50 members of the Irish Postmasters' Union have staged a protest outside the Taoiseach's constituency office in Castlebar in Co Mayo.They are calling on Enda Kenny to show leadership in securing the future of the postal service.There are currently 1,100 post offices in operation around the country and it is estimated there could be in the region of 600 closures under An Post's restructuring plan. Workers say they will resist any such moves by An Post. Most of the postmasters taking part in the protest are from rural post offices across Co Mayo.

April 10, 2017

BANGLADESH: FinancialExpressThe Bangladesh postal service has begun a new initiative: hiring women to drive its mail vans. Women will drive 20 per cent of the 118 new vans purchased by the postal service.Nineteen of the vans were inaugurated at the ceremony and ten women were handed the keys to their vans by the minister.

INDIA: TheHansIndiaThe prestigious India Post Payment Bank (IPPB) will come up in Vijayawada very soon. The works have been started for setting up of the bank at Buckinghampet Post Office in Vijayawada. Probably the IPPB services will be available after September this year. The target of the IPPB services is 650 branches in the country by end of September 2017.

April 9, 2017

POLAND: AssociatedPressHundreds of Polish postal workers have noisily marched through downtown Warsaw to demand higher pay and better work conditions. The protesters demanded that more people be employed to help share the workload.Similar protests were organized in Warsaw and other Polish cities last month. There has been no government reaction.

April 6, 2017

UNITED KINGDOM: Post&Parcel:  Royal Mail’s General Logistics Systems (GLS) has bought the US-based overnight parcel delivery company, Postal Express. Postal Express operates in the states of Washington, Oregon, and Idaho, mainly working with business-to-business customers. Postal Express generated revenue of about $42m and delivered about 8.7m parcels in the year ended 31 December 2016. It would be consolidated within GLS for reporting purposes, but managed as a separate entity.

April 5, 2017

CHINA: ChinaPostHealth Minister Chen Shih-chung appeared to pour cold water on an idea broached Tuesday by the Transportation Ministry that would see the postal service participating in elderly care. The Transportation Ministry is exploring the possibility of having mail deliverers make routine checkups and deliver supplies to senior citizens, while forming a monitoring system that would help keep tabs on those living by themselves in rural areas. Chen said that while the possibility was low that postal workers could be tasked with primary tasks in senior care, they may be able to perform auxiliary tasks like reporting incidents of physical immobility and other instances of seniors encountering immediate difficulties.

CHINA: FinancialTimes:  Amazon has proven adept at growing businesses from scratch and by stealth. Now it is taking aim at the $8tn global logistics industry, by quietly nurturing a programme in China through which any wholesaler can use it to ship goods around the world by sea, land or air. The service, called Amazon Logistics+, has expanded greatly in recent months to include cross-border air transportation, as well as packaging, warehousing, customs and handling services. Logistics analysts say the new offering will increase pressure on established shippers such as UPS, FedEx and DHL — because anyone in China can use the service, not just Amazon sellers.

KENYA: AllAfrica: A United Nations agency has today feted Kenya for compliance with globally recognized postal addressing standards at the ongoing Postal Operational Council (UPU) meeting in Bern, Switzerland. Presenting the S42 recognition certificate to Kenya, the Director General of the Universal Postal Union (UPU), Amb. Bishar Hussein congratulated the country on its efforts to establish a national addressing system and align its addressing formats with the UPU's S46 and S53 addressing standards.

April 4, 2017

GREECE: EkathimeriniPostal workers in the Greek capital have called rolling 24-hour strikes from Tuesday through Friday in protest at management decisions regarding delivery services.The Hellenic Postal Service (ELTA) workers held a rally on Tuesday morning and called the strike to decry the outsourcing of delivery services to private courier companies, which, they say, undermines prospects for more hirings at the state-run company.

NEW ZEALAND: TheJournalNEW ZEALAND’S NATIONAL postal service has started delivering Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC) in a bid to counteract revenue losses.NZ Post and the fast food giant have launched a pilot scheme in the North Island city of Tauranga. Mike Stewart, a spokesman for NZ Post, said the company needs to diversify its business as the number of letters being posted in the country has halved in the last decade.

April 3, 2017

UAE: GulfNewsFinding your way around in Sharjah is about to get a whole lot easier. In the past, people found their way around Sharjah city — and the wider UAE — with an often confusing system of landmarks and street names. But since last week, the Sharjah Urban Planning Council (SUPC) has started a full rollout of a postal code system which gives areas unique addresses. The system also aims to raise the efficiency of postal services in the emirate and is linked to the geographical information system (GIS) as per international standards.

April 2, 2017

AUSTRALIA: AsiaNikkea: Australian Postal Corp. may be in for a fall. After near dominance of the country's parcel delivery market for over 200 years, the giant finds itself being challenged by a growing number of startups offering more flexible alternatives at lower costs. Australians are fed up with waiting in long queues at post offices and paying relatively high prices for increasingly poor services. The 40-year-old CEO of Sendle, a delivery startup, is arming his company with information technology to take on the giant. Sendle became a hit after launching a flat-rate nationwide delivery service back in July 2015. A package weighing 500 grams or less can be delivered anywhere in Australia for just 7.95 Australian dollars (US$6.08). And in addition to being cheaper than Australia Post, it's faster and more convenient.

QATAR: ThePeninsulaQatar: Qatar Post (Q-Post) launched its much-anticipated home delivery service allowing customers to have their post directly delivered to their homes.This new service covers both letters and parcels and is available to all personal post box subscribers, with choice of delivery from one to six days a week, Q-Post said in statement. Currently all customers collect their mail from the post box during working hours of Qatar Post branches across the country. With the new service named Home Delivery, personal post box subscribers can receive their letters and parcels at home at their convenience with a high degree of flexibility. Qatar Post is currently going through an intense transformation phase from a brand, products and services perspective, aimed at turning Qatar Post into a world-class postal operator by embracing the digital age, a modern economy and a changing society, said the statement.