Perhaps consumer activity will help make the borders go away! The globalization of retail shopping is reaching markets everywhere. This article sets out in detail the investments being made by Russian Post to respond to an enormous increase in mail and parcel traffic into Russia…
“Russian Post said since the beginning of 2009. incoming interrnational mail volumes have tripled, and the number of small packages coming into the country from abroad has quadrupled, particularly because of the growing number of Russians shopping through foreign e-commerce sites.
December 2011 has seen 7m items sent to Russia, including 1.5m parcels.Russian Post has been trying to decentralise its international operations to some extent, reducing the strain on its Moscow mail plant.
However, it states that foreign postal operators tend not to sort mail into different Russian regions, and send it en mass “wherever it suits them”, which means usually to Moscow.”
Royal Mail said this week its Heathrow Worldwide Distribution Centre has been handling more than 600,000 packets a day so far during the festive period.This is almost double the amount for a normal day.
The UK postal service said Australia was the leading growth market for UK distance sellers, with November figures suggesting a 31% growth in package volumes going Down Under compared to the same period last year.
European markets have also been fairing well for UK e-commerce and mail order firms, including Greece, which despite its economic woes has been attracting 21% more packages from the UK this year, as well as Finland 20% higher volumes, Netherlands 20% and France 19%.Denmark 10%, Switzerland 9.5%, Italy 7% and Spain 6.9% are also among the top European growth markets for British parcel shipments this year.
Volumes going to the United States have grown by 9.8% according to Royal Mail figures.
This is a terrific piece that will lighten the heart of anyone who hopes India will speed up its development, and thus the welfare of its diverse population. This is India Post’s own record of its accomplishments for 2011. The posts in the developed countries are struggling to (1) find new products and services to satisfy investors and (2) fulfill the universal service obligation to deliver to every residence and business in the face of a rapidly deteriorating volume of mail.
India Post has the challenges of under-development in a two-speed economic environment. Many strands of development phases that took place seriatim in the West are occurring simultaneously in India – addressing system installation, identity proofing, parcel delivery, mechanization of mail sortation, e-services. India Post is thus a very busy place with an important portfolio of responsibilities. Many of them have their counterparts in Europe and North America, and some do not.
Very intriguing. As you read, please note that a “crore” is the equivalent of 10 million, and a “lakh” is 100,000.
Happy New Year!
The UPU today made its official call for tenders for the setup of the .post Registry services and .post Escrow services. Details on both tenders can be found on the UPU website (www.upu.int) under “Resources” -> “Call for Tenders” or at this link http://www.upu.int/en/resources/calls-for-tenders/current-calls-for-tenders.html.
This will also be published this week at www.simap.ch – The Swiss official gazette of commerce for official information and legal announcements.
The last date for submissions of offers is 3 February 2012.
This is a very, very major step forward in the development of this top-level domain for the global postal industry. It will enable many posts to leap-frog forward in terms of both domestic and international services.
It is unfortunate that the USPS has thus far shown very little senior-level interest in participating in the network. The USPS still has not turned its attention to the digital challenge in the domestic service, let along contemplate cross-border services. However, we are heartened that it has at least been represented on the work committee by the very able Janice Gould of the International Department and is aware of this important project. This committee has had an intense several years of discussions, many held by telephone conference call with participants, including Janice, calling in at some times very early hours!
We would pose the question whether it might not be beneficial from a business development point of view for the USPS to use participation in providing some digital-based services through dot Post as an experiment. If they work, then bring them into the home market. How about an international hybrid mail system, for example? With world-class security within the dot Post domain, hybrid mail vendors abroad could use their posts as points of entry to the UPU system with dot Post as the transmission medium. The USPS could channel transmissions to private sector hybrid mail vendors in the US at locations closest to the postal intake points.
What’s missing in this scenario is for the terminal dues system to account for digital mail. It is unlikely posts would be interested in diverting paper mail to this channel unless they retain that income stream. There is a UPU regulation on the matter which could at least permit a start of the system. Basically, it was a compromise “punt” of the issue in a previous Congress when delegates did not know what to do with a proposal to bring hybrid mail into the terminal dues system. The problem is that it calls for countries to set the rates on a bilateral basis. Of course, if only a handful of countries are interested, perhaps this is not an overwhelming issue.
If you are not going to Triangle’s annual gathering of the most important people in the international postal industry in the Americas, you will be able to read all about it in a future issue of The Prescott Report. However, you would be better served by attending the conference. As talented and thorough as we are in reporting on the presentations by the most important and influential people in the industry, nothing beats being there. And this year “there” is the beautiful Trump International Beach Resort in Miami. February 6 and 7, but come on the 5th to be at the opening reception.
The program is a who’s who of important speakers and doers in the industry: Paul Vogel and Giselle Valera of the USPS; Wagner Pinheiro de Oliveira, Brazil Post; Beat Friedli, SwissSign. I will be especially interested in interplay between and among Pablo Moreno, CEO of ampm (Mexico), Alfredo Romera, president of ALACOPP, and Pablo Salvador Reyes Pruneda, DG of Mexico Post. Also speaking is Serrana Bassini, Secretary General of UPAEP and candidate for Director General of the Universal Postal Union. But there are many more good thinkers, including the writer who will suggest to the posts what they can do along the lines of Getting the Basics Right.
For the program and full details: http://www.triangle.eu.com/events/world-mail-express-americas-2012/
And who knows – we might see the renowned Donald Trump, always a potential candidate for President of the United States. This being an election year, I suspect he is travelling among his many properties shaking all the hands he can!
We’ve had a large number of requests for our article on how to find where your customers are coming from if your only contact is an inbound email. This article is extracted from The Prescott Report Volume III Issue 4. (Available for purchase) We would caution that in some countries emails bounce around like pinballs and the accuracy of this solution is at least “subject to confirmation”. We had one correspondent whom we located by this technique in northern India when he was in fact at the very southern tip of India. One expert we have spoken to about this suggested that our correspondent was on a dial-up connection that linked to a server facility in the north. In fact, the address you get is that of a server, not the person. Where in the world did this come from? (334)
This may be a critical matter for legal compliance, especially with respect to privacy laws. For example, Canada’s do-not-spam law (discussed in the same issue of the newsletter as this subject) has particularly nasty penalties. Other traps are US laws regarding doing business with people in certain countries, such as North Korea and Iran. These have nasty penalties possibly surpassing Canada’s.
Something like 40% of this town in New Mexico showed up at a USPS meeting on the potential closing of their post office. Once again, the comments of residents reveal how critical the post office is to their lives, and how little the USPS fails to understand this.
“The post office is our life blood,” said Judith Watkins, who came with her husband, Jesse. “There have been times it even prevented potential disasters because it has a telephone inside the building and acted as a central dispatch location during emergencies.”
And there is a cultural divide between customers and the USPS:
“How can you say you understand our situation when you have urban roots?” Wetzel said of Wood’s living in Albuquerque and not a rural town. “How can you put into words what our situation is so the people in Washington, D.C., can get a clear picture?”
The comment drew a loud applause from the crowd, and brought on more personal stories.
And there is also the underlying theme of the USPS problem: Congress says it has to be a business and not lose money on any of its activities. Well, that means it can not be a provider of “social goods” and “bind the Nation together”. Well, then, this citizen’s remark at the Mule Creek meeting pretty much says it all:
“It seems like the government is not using any common sense at all in this situation,” Wetzel said. “I hope they don’t consider us second-class citizens because we live in a rural area.”
Well, Mr.Wetzel, that pretty much sums it up. If they can’t at least break even doing what they do for you, they aren’t going to do it. In short, your government is indeed going to abandon you.
The title of the piece that caught my eye last week is “Rural Post Office closures will hurt Natives, elderly and the poor.” by Winona LaDuke in The Circle – Native American News and Arts. This is a Minneapolis-based newspaper serving the Native American population.
The author points out that a number of post offices in remote areas of Minnesota are scheduled for closure. The author gets the reason wrong – citing “federal budget cuts”, but she puts forth reasons for keeping these rural post offices open that go deep into a subject that seems absent from the discussion in Washington: “One might ask…if the USPS is a business or a service in this country, and question the long term costs of the closure.”
Is the USPS still tasked with “binding the nation together”? Certainly from Ms.LaDuke’s experience and reporting, in the Native American community there is a very pressing need for it to do just that. Unfortunately, the costs of discontinuing critical postal delivery services will be severe, and only partially “measurable”. And if it can’t be measured, Congress doesn’t want to hear about it.
Some of the consequences:
- a loss of 4,000 jobs, not a small matter in a community with few businesses or opportunities.
- the Internet is not a common tool among Native Americans, at only about 10% penetration (rural population, scattered, and poor – not a business opportunity); they need the mail.
- a higher proportion of people without drivers’ licenses or vehicles – they can’t drive 10 miles to another town for their mail.
- a highly mobile employed population which migrates between cities and the reservation, and need a permanent postal address for both legal and employment purposes.
- Address system maintenance for voting privileges, communication with government agencies, including social services and the justice system.
Let’s be clear. We are talking about a very poor community that needs the USPS as no other community does: “ Let’s start with the paperwork of being poor. Simply stated, it is a lot of work or “white paper” to be poor in this country. Just attempting to get a job, and making sure one is able to respond to prospective employers, requires a valid postal address. Voting requires a valid postal address, and people need to correspond with agencies, whether social services, justice department or energy assistance. Losing those post offices will be a burden to people who have no other way then the postal service to conduct their business. People cannot drive elsewhere for mail, and more mail will not be delivered.”
It should be easy for Congress to declare that the taxpayers should support the USPS in situations such as these. The social good to be derived is all too clear. And if it amounts to even $1 billion a year I would be astounded. After all, as Ms. LaDuke points out: “If the Bank of Scotland could get $84 billion in a federal bail out in 2008 (Bank of America got a slim $91.4 billion) it would seem that the USPS might deserve more of a break. The rural post office closures will save $ l billion…Layoffs in the largely rural post office closures will result in around 4000 jobs lost.”
In Washington, this social cost is being ignored.
This article reviewing some of the materials presented at a symposium held by the Global Envelope Alliance last month in Washington is very much worth reading as an insight into the subject of geocodes. I highly recommend it. Executive Director.
Yesterday at the Consultative Committee meeting of the Universal Postal Union, the Association of Latin American Private Postal Operators (ALACOPP) presented the results of two studies that had been commissioned by their Argentinian member, Asociacion de Empresas de Correo de la Republica Argentina, AECA. This latter association represents 35 private postal operators who handle something approaching 60% of the postal traffic in the country. The membership of ALACOPP itself is drawn from eight countries between Mexico and Cape Horn and account for some 65% of all postal traffic in the continent and more than two million employees.
The presentation was given by the manager of the studies, Lic. Gabriel F. Perez, Environmental and Sustainable Development Committee Co-ordinator of AECA.
In brief, the two studies concluded that in terms of the environmental impact, the creation and transmission of a letter does not have a negative environmental impact, even including calculations relating to delivering by truck between distant cities. Both environmental and social impacts are measured.
A calculation of the carbon footprints of the same size of letter and an email with a 1 meg attachment revealed that the letter’s carbon footprint, taking delivery into account, is some 28.9 grams, while an email’s footprint is 44 grams. Please download the studyAssessment of Postal Activity: Argentina (175).
These two studies are the first to be done in Latin America and in the meeting at which presented, a representative of the postal regulator of Argentina praised the initiative of ACEA in undertaking them.