Consultative Committee - Postal Prosperity Zones (PPZ)

All About PPZ

 1 - What does the PPZ initiative consist of, and what benefits will wider postal stakeholder players ( WPSPs) enjoy after participating in the pilot project?

 The PPZ initiative is a project that seeks to enable designated operators (DOs) to fully engage with WPSPs. Given the special role of DOs in providing countrywide postal delivery services and operating secure offices of exchange under the supervision of competent governmental authorities, they enjoy beneficial customs and import procedures. It is worth noting in this connection that services provided in collaboration with DOs may vary from country to country. 

 The seamless flow of cross-border B2C supplies based on harmonized data and its interconnectivity between all WPSPs involved (all transport modes, including rail and maritime) is at the core of this initiative.

 Any private company wishing to participate in the PPZ initiative must become a CC member. Different CC membership classes exist, the details of which can be found on the CC webpage.

2 - What is the pilot’s planned start date? What is the CC’s objective (or expected outcome) for the pilot? Should companies be involved in the entire business process of the pilot model chosen?

 The PPZ initiative will enter into a deployment phase during the second half of 2023, spearheaded by Morocco given that major parts of the initiative are ready to be deployed there. As the technical and messaging specifications and the IT infrastructure are already available, and some of the more recent necessities have been addressed by UPU CC WPSPs, in compliance with UPU treaties and governmental regulations, we expect the first results to be available by the fourth quarter of 2023. 


3 - Knowing that the commercial volumes of express delivery companies in the Moroccan flow are not particularly high, is there a set entry threshold for the participation of – or any business volume requirements for – wider postal stakeholder players (WSPs) in the pilot project in Morocco?

Morocco is an emerging North African market, with very strong business relations in the North Africa region. While Morocco hosts the largest free zone in the Mediterranean region (TangerMed:, the aim of the postal prosperity zone (PPZ) initiative is to interconnect fulfilment for B2C supplies (e-commerce) using the worldwide harmonized data mandatory for cross-border postal consignments for seamless customs/ import clearance, transport security and product safety (and in the future for the measurement, reporting and allocation of CO2 and greenhouse gas emissions). The Moroccan market is therefore part of the value proposition, and establishing a hub for the North Africa region is already the wider aspect of the initiative.

Given that the UPU’s mission is to interconnect all citizens worldwide, the UPU Consultative Committee (CC) believes that its members (WPSPs) may help to ensure that interconnectivity to achieve a seamless flow of postal consignments across borders can be achieved.


4 - For the PPZ pilot project in Morocco, could WPSPs use Morocco as a transfer/transit point to develop activities with its neighbouring countries or regions based on bilateral or multilateral agreements, and would the pilot project facilitate this business model for WPSPs?

 Yes, WPSPs may use the PPZ initiative initiated by the designated postal operator (DO) of Morocco in close collaboration with the Moroccan Customs. The aim of the initiative is to establish a regional hub for the North Africa region. Several other DOs in Africa, Asia, Europe and South America have already sent letters of interest to both the UPU Director General and the Chief Operating Officer of the Moroccan Post, indicating their interest in the PPZ initiative driven by Morocco. 

Furthermore, given the emerging harmonization of transport security and product safety, which is based on the availability of electronic advance data (EAD) prior to transport, the PPZ initiative may also help to overcome issues such as the harmonized allocation of Harmonized System (HS) six-digit codes, the harmonized digital pre-lodging of transport documentation (i.e. the Stop Act, the European Union’s Import Control System 2, the European electronic freight and transport information system), and transshipment issues enabling direct injection based on bilateral and multilateral agreements.

5 - In which countries or regions will the pilot project be followed up and duplicated if it is successfully implemented in Morocco? 

The UPU CC is currently working with a view to further participation in all regions. Given the role of the UPU as a unifier of global networks and solutions and in harmonizing UPU technical and messaging specifications (including aligning UPU standards with European postal standards applicable to all European postal/express operators based on the European Union’s postal legislation and regulations, as well as standards developed and further revised by the International Organization for Standardization), the main role of the PPZ initiative is to enable least developed countries (LDCs) and developing countries (DCs) to gain access to new cross-border e-commerce volumes since the postal volumes have left the UPU global postal network and gone to post/express operators actively operating worldwide on the territories of those UPU member countries.

The PPZ initiative is of critical importance in regions where micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) are not interconnected to the digital retail network but in which DOs have full access to the global postal IT network (offered, supported, and administered by the UPU Postal Technology Centre).

6 - Can postal customs clearance be used to clear consignments under the pilot project? What are the specific connection requirements for the information connection link?

 Customs, import duties, transport security and product safety are a vital component of the PPZ initiative, as is the management of returns. Based on the most likely decisions of the fourth Extraordinary Congress taking place in Riyadh from 1 to 5 Oct 2023, we expect issues related to the end-to-end measurement, allocation and reporting of CO2 and greenhouse gas emissions to be addressed under the PPZ initiative (notwithstanding the fact that the necessary data will be made available at the postal consignment level in a harmonized manner globally).

7 - In addition to exports to Morocco, is the model applicable to imports from Morocco?

Yes, as the PPZ initiative is based on globally harmonized technical and message related UPU specifications, aligned with other UN agency standards (even regional standards, as the UPU specifications can be mapped to the pre-shipping mandatory data exchange requirements with governmental authorities), it will apply to both the import and export activities of its participants.

Join the PPZ Initiative

Member countries wishing to join the PPZ initiative can express their willingness to participate by sending a letter of support for the project to the Director General of the UPU and the Director General of Poste Maroc. Examples of correspondence can be found in the section below.

Member Countries' Support for the PPZ Initiative

Since its launch, designated operators from member countries (MCs) have manifested their enthusiasm for the PPZ initiative. Correspondences between MCs, Morocco Post, and the UPU can be found below:


Côte d'Ivoire (Rep.)




PPZ Reports

Most recent PPZ reports can be found below: