De Jong: Liberalisation of postal sector in Europe ‘one big failure’

28 January 2014

De Jong: Liberalisation of postal sector in Europe ‘one big failure’

The European trade union group UNI Post & Logistics today presented in the European Parliament its report on the situation in the postal sector. A number of MEPs, including the SP’s Dennis de Jong, will receive the report at a special meeting. ‘The researchers have concluded that in fifteen years’ time the number of jobs in the postal sector in the EU will have declined by 30% and that wages will have fallen by 40%’ says De Jong. ‘The quality of the service has gone down enormously. The trade unions are correct in their assessment that liberalisation has been one big failure.’

Dennis de JongThe unions admitted that the rise of the Internet clearly means a drop in demand for traditional letter delivery. At the same time the market for parcel post has grown enormously precisely as a result of the Internet. ‘Without liberalisation and privatisation the state could have ensured a postal sector worthy of trust with a workforce carrying out their tasks under good conditions of service,’ says De Jong. ‘Losses in traditional letter-carrying would have been made up through additional gains for the parcel post. Now parcel delivery has been split up and sold off to firms abroad. The member states are left with traditional postal delivery.’

In an attempt to make this traditional service attractive for market participants, the Commission is considering abandoning the principle of a minimum five days per week postal delivery. ‘UNI Post & Logistics argues correctly that this is putting the cart before the horse,’ De Jong comments. ‘If the service gets worse fewer people will make use of the letter post. This will destroy the last bit of the traditional postal delivery service too. It would be better if the Commission would just admit that they have failed and that the whole idea of liberalisation of the postal sector has been a failure. This would give the member states the space to organise their own postal sector as they wish.’

You are here