April 19-23, 2021, via videoconference

From 19 to 23 April 2021, a meeting of the UPU Postal Operations Council was held, organized via videoconferencing.

The event was attended by over 400 delegates from member countries, as well as observers from international and regional organizations. The meeting was attended by full members of the RCC Postal Operators Board: Azerpost LLC and Russian Post JSC, as well as representatives of the RCC Executive Committee.

The agenda of the above event included a wide range of issues, such as:

- ensuring the security of postal services;

- ensuring the safety of data;

- the proposed changes in the transport tariff for 2022, ensuring a uniform approach;

- regulation of tariffs due to the imbalance of outgoing and incoming mail flows in the United States;

- requirements for electronic preliminary information (SAD);

- introduction of additional markups for registered, insured and tracked mail in connection with the pandemic;

- introduction of surcharges when sending parcels;

- discussion of the audit report as well as the report on digital changes in the postal sector.

The meeting of the financial services group was moderated by Igor Telpukhovsky, Director of the Business Planning and International Finance Department of the Russian Post. It was noted at the meeting that the share of designated operators in the postal payment services market is not growing, and moreover, postal services are losing part of the postal payment services market. In this regard, it was deemed necessary to conduct a study of the current situation, ensure the localization of payment postal products, and prepare proposals to the International Bureau for replacing payment corridors in France, which were stopped due to the closure of the Postal Bank of this country. The meeting discussed the proposed cooperation of the UPU with the payment systems Western Union and Ria. The representatives of the UPU International Bureau presented a case for such cooperation: leveraging the technical expertise of these organizations will help increase the flow of payments through the UPU. However, the opinions of the participants were divided, the representatives of Morocco, France and Spain expressed doubts about the advisability of such cooperation. Representatives of the International Bureau and the participating countries also discussed what needs to be done to promote the PosTransfer system, which was supported by 12, but only 5 countries actually use.

Oleg Syromyatnikov, a representative of the Russian Post, spoke at the meeting of the group on material services and e-commerce, emphasizing the importance of finding competitive advantages for designated operators in light of the discussed opening of the UPU to a wider range of participants.

At the plenary session held on 23.04.2021, chaired by Masahiko Metoki, the group leaders presented the results of their structures, including issues that caused disagreements and decisions.

The head of the UPU Postal Technology Center, Lata Matata, presented the financial results for 2020. Jeremy Posey (International Bureau) provided an overview of EIT activities up to the 27th Congress. In particular, it was noted that the head of the department for the development of technologies and optimization of logistics routes of the Russian Post Mikhail Ovchinnikov was elected to the board of the Fund for the quality of services of the UPU. These reports were approved by the participants of the plenary session.

Representative of the International Bureau Siva Somasundram said that 42 participating countries applied for participation in the Governing Body, and 60 participating countries for participation in the EIT. Acceptance of applications continues. He also announced a proposal to hold the 27th UPU Congress in a hybrid format. The proposal raised questions from the meeting participants, since such a format is not provided for by the UPU documents. Answering these questions, the speaker noted that in order to hold the Congress in a hybrid format, it is necessary to change the Regulations. Moreover, 2/3 of the number of countries registered for the Congress must be present at the meeting in order to change the Rules.

The next EIT meeting is scheduled for November 15-19, 2021.

At the end of the meeting, the chairman of the meeting, Masahiko Metoki, summed up the results and thanked all the participants for their work.