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Law Drafting Goes Postal

Another day, another draft law. This time it is for the (eighth draft of the) Postal Law (via FT) and, as usual, there is plenty of feedback in the market suggesting that it would create:

It is reported that the law would give China Post a “total monopoly over deliveries of parcels weighing less than 150g, which account for more than 90 per cent of the intra-city business of private delivery companies”. In addition, it is thought that it would prevent foreign and private firms from handling business from online retailers. Other measures are also thought to benefit China Post, with tightening of “licensing controls and compulsory payments to subsidise universal postal services”.

So, what is the postal service in China all about? Here are some (not insignificant) official statistics [1]on deliveries from 2005:

No wonder the international firms want a piece of it! The Conference of Asia Pacific Express Carriers [2](Capec), which represents international delivery companies (such as DHL, UPS, FedEx and TNT – who perhaps want to keep a lower individual profile when complaining) is quoted as saying that:

The FT reports that the draft is part of a plan to restructure the postal system, and to separate its overlapping regulatory and operational functions. This seems to be in line with general policy moves, and the introduction of the Anti-Monopoly Law [3]. However, it seems that any plans for aggressive reform may have been…lost in the post (for now).

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