Regulating postal prices – how and why 19 August 20

Postal regulators continue to have a focus on pricing, despite declining volumes of mail and acknowledged difficulties with funding the universal service.

The Postal Services Directive sets out that prices must respect the principles of affordability and cost orientation, as well as transparency and non-discrimination. However, there are strong indications that affordability is not an issue for postal end users, especially when compared with the cost of broadband and telephony services. At the same time, regulatory assessment of cross-border tariffs, as required under the European regulation on cross-border parcels, shows that only a handful of tariffs are considered to be “unreasonably high”.

Cullen International’s Postal service provides comprehensive national benchmarks to show whether and how national authorities in Europe regulate the retail prices of the postal incumbent, including details of the price cap mechanism applied. We also track national prices for letters and the standard prices applied to the most common sizes of e-commerce packages. Recent regulatory developments on pricing include the courts in Germany overturning the letter price control methodology, and the rejection in Portugal of proposals to increase cross-border prices to take account of changes in terminal dues.

To access our benchmark on letter tariffs, please click on “Access the full content” or on “Request Access”, in case you are not subscribed to our Postal service.

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