UPU paves path for climate action and postal financial services

The UPU’s fourth Extraordinary Congress has agreed on an historic “Green Package” including voluntary climate action targets for the sector, as well as approving an ambitious modernization plan for postal financial services that sets the course for interconnection with the wider postal sector.

The approved “Green Package” sets forth a voluntary tiered approach to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions in the postal sector, recommended based on posts’ capacity to measure emissions and take action. First tier countries would strive to reduce emissions 30% by 2030, with all three tiers working towards a collective 85% reduction by 2050.

In addition to the reduction targets, the package passed on 3 October sets forth a framework for enabling greater climate action within the sector, focusing on mitigation, adaptation, and climate finance, and supported by a dedicated Climate Facility. This Facility will be established pending voluntary contributions. United Arab Emirates and Germany pledged their partial financial support during the plenary meeting.

The adoption of the package also provides a mechanism for posts to make their green commitments and ambitions more visible, by signing the Postal Climate Transparency Action statement. Collectively, these statements will send a unified message to stakeholders that the postal sector aims to support transformative climate action.

Postal Financial Services

Proposals passed during the meeting of member countries will bring about changes to postal financial services on two fronts.

First, it will usher in improvements to the UPU’s legal framework for postal payments, known as the Postal Payments Services Agreement (PPSA). These changes are directed at increasing the interoperability of the postal payments network, including the establishment of conditions for interconnection with wider postal sector players (WPSPs); prevention of money laundering, terrorist financing and financial crime; PPS*Clearing; remuneration and the global adoption of a trusted trademark, PosTransfer.

The resolution lays the grounds for further broader changes to the Union’s legal frameworks associated with postal payment and other postal financial in order to identify opportunities related to the diversification of the scope of postal financial services, the removal of outdated elements and the adoption of a more flexible approach to defining products and services, technologies, channels and interoperability rules. This includes rules for further engagement with wider postal financial service players (WPFSPs).

To promote the continued evolution of postal financial services worldwide, member countries have agreed to start work towards establishing an advisory knowledge center, subject to extrabudgetary funding. This centre would focus on the development exchange best practices, share updates and information on regulatory frameworks, promote and improve financial literacy, provide technical assistance to member countries, increase the awareness and understanding of postal financial services within the financial services and postal sectors, and promote financial inclusion and gender equality.

The Extraordinary Congress will continue until October 5th. Member countries are scheduled to discuss other urgent postal sector matters throughout the week-long meeting. Additionally, ministers, heads of postal regulators, and postal CEOs will convene for a UPU Strategy Summit on October 4th and 5th, where they will contribute to the development of the UPU’s strategy for 2026-2029.

Learn more about the UPU’s fourth Extraordinary Congress.