A new postal regulation is in the making to govern postal and courier services to replace the first Postal Proclamation (Postal Proclamation No.240/1966) by Emperor H/Selassie.
“We expect Posta regulations to be re-formed as there is no legal frame work which governs the postal sector not only Ethiopia’s Posta but also all the couriers in the sector,” said Hanna Aryasilassie, CEO of Ethiopia Posta Service Enterprise.
Ethiopost has been implementing various reform activities aimed at modernizing processes, optimizing its operations, and providing customers with reliable, effective and affordable service.
“The last Posta regulation was adopted in 1966 at the time the only operator in the country was Ethiopia Posta but now there are more than 80 couriers,” the CEO said, adding, “There should be clarification of mandates between us and other couriers. When other couriers focus on only profitable areas, we work on government obligations too without profit. About 80 percent of our branches worked through losses just to be accessible to the public.”
As Hanna indicates, “In other countries there is a so called universal service fund, the entire courier in this sector contribute to finance the designated operator. Due to lack of this, Ethiopost has no other revenue sources. This can’t be sustainable and has impact on us.”
“Ethiopian Communication Authority is the one handling the preparation and we expect it to be finalized before the end of this year,” the CEO expressed her hope on the matter.
Also as the CEO elaborates, Ethiopost is working with the respective office to re-amendment its establishment regulation. The latest Ethiopia Posta Service Enterprise establishment under regulation no.165/2009 transfers the right and obligations of the former Ethiopian postal service operated under proclamation no. 240/1966.
Currently, the enterprise is focusing on updating itself by providing a wide range of E-commerce and various financial services.
“We want to engage in E-commerce and support the nationwide vision of creating and expanding a digital economy. Ethiopost is ideally suited to make this reality through its extensive network of branches and years of experience in the logistic sector,” stated Hanna.
As she explains, Ethiopost has its trial operation of ecommerce this month on transit packages from China to other Africa countries through Ethiopia.
Ethiopost has been through a series of losses over the past years as result of low staff motive and capability, poor customer service, weak marketing and traditional and outdated processes and services. This has rendered the enterprise to become uncompetitive in service provision as well as hindered its financial standing.
The reform activities entailed restructuring the institutional setup, minimizing cost and diversifying services. In collaboration with the Universal Postal Union, Ethiopost is working to leverage its extensive experience in the mail and logistics sector to support e-commerce initiatives in Ethiopia. Last year the enterprise grabbed 187 million birr in profits. For the current fiscal year the enterprise has targeted to generate 1.5 billion birr in revenue.