UPU Chief: Postal Network Plays Key Role in Information Age

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Thomas E. Leavey, director general of the Universal Postal Union, told postal industry leaders attending Post-Expo 2003 in Brussels yesterday that the worldwide postal network is critical to bridging the digital divide between people who have access to information and communication technologies and those who do not.

Leavey told delegates at the postal business forum that despite falling letter-mail volumes, the postal service is in a unique position to meet the challenges of the information society.

The network of 660,000 postal outlets worldwide, for example, could be used to facilitate people's access to the Internet and other communication technologies, and many postal administrations already do this, he said.

He also reassured the audience that postal services will continue in the secure delivery of mail items, citing the work his agency and leading postal administrations are doing on the adoption of a global standard for electronic postmarks.

"The postal network remains a reliable and essential infrastructure in the development of the national and global economies," Leavey said. "I believe the information revolution is an opportunity for postal services to focus on creative communication solutions for their customers, and on service quality, which is essential to keep customers' loyalty and trust."


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