New tough rules for courier operators

Fargo Courier staff sort out packages at the firm’s Mombasa Road offices in Nairobi. Industry revenues are on the decline due to a changing business environment. [File, Standard]

 

vurmdrwxwz1ven7tw5965092533efb New tough rules for courier operators
Fargo Courier staff sort out packages at the firm’s Mombasa Road offices in Nairobi. Industry revenues are on the decline due to a changing business environment. [File, Standard]

Postal and courier operators will soon be subjected to fresh regulatory requirements following a move by the Communications Authority (CA) to revise the quality of service guidelines.

This comes in the wake of a renewed push to re-invent the country’s postal system to match the demands of a changing market.

Under the new guidelines, operators will now be required to ensure items sent within the same urban area reach their destination within a minimum of 24 hours, with a success rate of at least 80 per cent of all items dispatched within a month. Items shipped across urban areas will, on the other hand, have to reach the intended customer within two days, with the exception of areas with climatic, infrastructural and security challenges.

In these areas, operators will be allowed a maximum of five days to deliver packages to intended recipients.

“The purpose of this modification is to ensure the provision of better quality of services, provide for reasonable and achievable quality of service targets and to level the playing field,” said CA in a gazette notice dated July 3.

Operators will also be expected to address consumer complaints within three working days in the case of local mail and five working days for international mail.

Once effected, both local and international courier operators will be penalised if more than one per cent of items shipped within the month are lost. The same applies to damage reported on items. Operators who fail to meet the new service guidelines could be fined up to a maximum of 0.2 per cent of their annual gross turnover.

The new guidelines come even as postal and courier operators in the country struggle with dwindling revenue as the cost of digital communication and smart devices take a toll on traditional mail.

Data from the industry regulator indicates that 8.2 million letters were posted within the country in the first three months of this year, a 36 per cent drop from the 12.8 million letters posted in a similar period last year. 

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