Sat | May 25, 2019

PostCorp struggles to deliver mandate

Published:Saturday | April 28, 2018 | 12:00 AMEdmond Campbell/ Senior Staff Reporter
Monroe Ellis

The Postal Corporation of Jamaica (PostCorp), which was established in 2000 to lead

the modernisation and commercialisation of the public postal service, has failed to make any meaningful breakthrough in carrying out its mandate 18 years later.

Auditor General Pamela Monroe Ellis said that in 2011, PostCorp identified five initiatives aimed at reforming the public postal service. However, she said that the Post and Telecommunications Department, which is mandated to provide efficient and cost-effective postal and related services to its customers, has made little progress in implementing the initiatives identified by PostCorp.

Mail volume decline

As more customers gained access to electronic mail platforms and private mail delivery services, mail volume declined by an overall 26 per cent between 2012-13 and 2016-17.

The auditor general's findings form part of a performance audit of the public postal service.

Monroe Ellis also drew attention to the snail pace of the ministry with responsibility for technology in finalising the Postal Service Bill for Parliament's consideration and approval. The bill is also intended to create a new statutory corporation, Jamaica Post, and the regulation of the postal service in Jamaica.

"The new Postal Service Act will seek to establish an independent regulator. However, MSET (Ministry of Science, Energy and Technology) has not completed the Postal Service Bill since July 16, 2007, despite setting several targeted completion dates."

At present, the postal service sector is unregulated, with more than 24 commercial entities and contractors offering mail-delivery services, and some postal access points continue to operate uneconomically due to little or no mail activity.