The Chairman and Deputy Chairman of the European Regulators Group for Postal Services (ERGP) took part in an international mission to China, from 09 to 13 October 2019.
Although the main focus of the ERGP is the European market, dialogue with regulators from outside the European Union (EU) is increasingly relevant, given the increasing volume of incoming and outgoing postal services and the global nature of most developments in the sector. Industry legislation and regulation should also be viewed from a more global perspective. The ERGP needs to closely monitor global trends and changing business models in the industry so that it can maintain its ability to address challenges effectively, as they arise.
The ERGP delegation included, in addition to the Chairman of ANACOM and the ERGP (in 2019), João Cadete de Matos, the ERGP Deputy Chairs, Jack Hamande, also an Executive Member of the Management Board of the Belgian Institute for Postal Services and Telecommunications (BIPT) and Spyros Pantelis, Deputy Chairman of the National Telecommunications and Post Commission (EETT), as well as employees of ANACOM, the BIPT and the EETT.
On 09 October 2019, World Post Day, the China-Europe Postal Regulation Seminar was held, which featured presentations by the European delegation, China Post, Alibaba and the China State Post Bureau (Chinese regulator) on revision of the regulatory framework for postal services, the development of e-commerce and the cross-border parcel segment, and the future of the universal service.
The delegation also met with several postal operators, express postal and e-commerce companies, such as DHL China, Alibaba, JD.com, China Post Innovation Group, SF Express and YTO Express.
Among the issues discussed were the current state of the postal sector in China, the redefinition of the concept of universal postal service, the exponential development of express and e-commerce companies, research and technological development, with a strong focus on robotization and use of 5G in various operational processes.
This mission was instrumental for making a comparison between the state of the postal services sector in China and Europe. Particular emphasis was placed on the highly significant development of the sector over the last 10 years, especially the express segment, which has invested in research and development in information and communication technologies to optimise operational processes and create very fast and highly targeted delivery solutions to address the needs of consumers. The focus is on innovation, efficiency and process optimisation. Moreover, companies are intensively developing green and environmentally-friendly technologies, with a strong focus on package recycling, also with a view to reducing costs.
The development of e-commerce has been highly significant and is widespread across the country. On the other hand, Chinese companies, postal operators and e-retailers are focusing heavily on global markets, with the full support of the regulator. Also noteworthy are the partnerships between express courier companies and online/e-retail platforms, also from a process optimisation perspective.
João Cadete de Matos, Chairman of the ERGP in 2019 and Chairman of ANACOM, during his speech at the China-Europe Seminar on Postal Regulation.
ERGP Delegation: Spyros Pantelis (EETT), Jack Hammande (BIPT), João Cadete de Matos (ANACOM), Christos Apostolou (EETT), Rita Filipe Silva (ANACOM) and Joost Callaert (BIPT).