We are creating some awesome events for you. Kindly bear with us.

Singapore amends Postal Services Act to support e-commerce landscape

A press release by the Ministry of Communications and Information (MCI) and the Infocomm Media Development Authority has explained the proposed amendments to the Postal Services Act (PSA), which have been passed in Parliament.

To support the growth of e-commerce and the resultant increased use of the postal network for e-commerce items, the PSA has been updated to facilitate the deployment of a nationwide network of parcel lockers to complement the existing letterbox infrastructure, amongst other improvements.

The amendments are expected to bring convenience to e-commerce users and level the playing field for logistics service providers. The introduction of open-access parcel lockers will benefit e-commerce users as SMEs and businesses digitalise and e-commerce continues to grow.

Additionally, the PSA amendments will improve access to letterboxes by logistics service providers to deliver non-letters. It will strengthen IMDA’s regulatory oversight of the postal sector and its infrastructure.

The PSA was last amended in 2007. The changes had provided a legislative framework for the liberalisation of the postal services sector. Since then, market and technological changes, especially the rise of e-commerce, have transformed the postal landscape.

The volume of parcel delivery is expected to intensify and domestic e-commerce parcel volume growth in Singapore is projected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 16% from now till 2025. The existing letterbox infrastructure is not designed for parcel delivery, and the current market for locker infrastructure is fragmented and unable to support projected growth.

The Senior Minister of State of MCI explained that parcels are typically delivered to the doorstep. However, based on industry estimates, about 7% of deliveries are unsuccessful, causing inconvenience to consumers and reducing the Delivery Service Providers (DSPs) productivity. Self-collection parcel lockers are also currently concentrated in high-traffic commercial areas, catering to only 5% of total parcel volume and leaving residential areas underserved. These parcel lockers, which are operated by individual DSPs, are also not accessible to other operators, resulting in a fragmented market and infrastructure duplication.

To enhance DSPs’ productivity and the efficiency of Singapore’s urban logistics sector, the Ministry previously announced that 1,000 parcel lockers would be rolled out in HDB estates, MRT stations, bus interchanges, community centres, and clubs by the end of this year.

Facilitating one of the world’s first nationwide open-access locker infrastructure

The PSA amendments will allow IMDA, as the appointed Postal Authority, to establish, install, operate, and maintain the public parcel locker network at specified premises, such as HDB estates, public transport nodes, and community centres, and clubs managed by the People’s Association. This will help address the current fragmentation of the parcel lockers and minimise duplication of locker infrastructure.

The amendments will provide for access to selected public spaces and facilities to deploy the parcel locker network and provide IMDA with enforcement to ensure its safe use and operation.

Strengthening regulatory oversight and improving letterbox infrastructure

The PSA amendments will allow other postal licensees, delivery service providers, and online merchants to deliver small packets and other non-letters into letterboxes through the public postal licensee (i.e., SingPost), at regulated terms and conditions. This will further facilitate competition in last-mile delivery services.

When the COVID-19 situation improves, the government intends to leverage IMDA’s events aimed at raising Singaporeans’ digital literacy, such as SG: Digital Wonderland, in an attempt to broaden the outreach to residents of all ages.

Send this to a friend