Speaking at the Barcelona New Economy Week (BNEW), the Deputy Director of the Universal Postal Union (UPU) Pascal Clivaz said the COVID-19 pandemic will bring about structural changes to the postal sector.Mr Clivaz said the pandemic had upended the traditional behaviour of economic players, driving them to increase the rate of digitalization.
As a result, techno-phobic consumers were now e-shoppers, poorly connected businesses were transforming into e-businesses and traditional government institutions were increasingly looking at e-government for solutions.
“The acceleration will certainly bring additional volumes to the ecommerce market, especially the B2C segment,” added Mr. Clivaz.
Posts were also changing the public’s perception about their essential role. Mr. Clivaz informed the virtual audience from around the world that posts were providing medicines and medical equipment, while also delivering 70 percent of ecommerce items.
Referencing the UPU’s unique role, the UPU Deputy Director said the UN specialised agency was mitigating the pandemic’s effects on posts through partnerships with other multilateral organizations, including: the International Air Transport Association (IATA), the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and the World Customs Organization (WCO), among others.
“Thanks to this cooperation each of UPU’s member countries were able to access alternative means of transport, achieve greater flexibility in customs rules and clear operational obstacles,” he said.
Speaking about resilience, Mr. Clivaz stressed that, to be successful, posts needed a diversified product portfolio and a flexible logistics chain to succeed during the pandemic.
He said posts had suffered due to the reliance on passenger flights and there was a need for a multimodal transport network.
Since the middle of March, 21 mail-only block trains have transported nearly 8,000 tons of mail between Asia and Europe.
The Deputy Director General was the keynote speaker on an 8 October panel titled, “One-Stop-Global - Mandatory electronic advanced pre-declaration for cross-border Ecommerce globally.”
Panellists included Noor Maalim Adan; Supply Chain Coordinator, Postal Operations Directorate (DOP), UPU; Mohan Guruswamy; Chief Knowledge Officer, World Free Zone Organisation; Eddy Richauvet, CEO Shoprunback, 4PX; Beatriz Galván Santiago, Head of European Relations, Correos. The moderator was Mr Walter Trezek, the Chair of the UPU Consultative Committee.
Held from 6-9 October, BNEW is an international event organised by the Barcelona Zona Franca Consortium to discuss the economy and to re-think what it should be like during the Covid-19 pandemic and beyond.