March 25 – COVID-19 Update

Access Worldwide is processing mail normally. As you know the global impact of this coronavirus is evolving rapidly. We will continue to update you daily.

Please see the following updates received from the UPU on the service impacts due to COVID-19:

· Panama – All categories of inbound, outbound and transit mail are suspended until further notice.

· New Zealand – With effect from 25 March 2020, the Government of New Zealand has raised the COVID-19 alert level to 4 (the highest level), declared a national state of emergency, and introduced wide-ranging measures that include self-isolation for four weeks across the entire country, limitation of the number of staff working to provide essential services and the implementation of skeleton operating staffs, and a ban on domestic travel. New Zealand Post has been identified by the Government as a business entity that provides essential services to the people of New Zealand. Therefore, New Zealand Post will remain in operation during the alert level 4 lockdown period, insofar as possible under the state of emergency provisions and regulations in place. Owing to the above restrictions, New Zealand Post can no longer guarantee service delivery standards (such as delivery times and other quality parameters, transmission of scanning events. Delivery changes: New Zealand Post has changed the way in which items requiring signature are delivered, so as to eliminate the need for customers to use scanners. The delivery staff will knock at the door as usual, step back away from the door, and ask for the recipient’s name to record proof of delivery. In this way, the need for any physical contact is eliminated (EmIS 113/2020).

· Cape Verde – All UPU member countries are advised to expect serious delays for both inbound and outbound mail as a result of the numerous flight reductions and cancellations.

· Ukraine – Ukrposhta is maintaining its operations, with measures in place to protect staff and customers. As these measures include self-quarantine of staff, delays are to be expected in the delivery of all inbound mail (letter-post, parcel-post and EMS items).

· France – For the postal-parcel division only:

– Offices of exchange FRAINB – FRBLDB – FRCYMA – FRDVRB – FRERNA – FRERNB – FRMCRA – FRSLMB – FRTLSJ will be closed on Monday, 30 March, Tuesday, 31 March and Saturday, 4 April 2020;

– As from Monday, 30 March, only items weighing less than 15 kg and with a maximum package size of 32 cm x 24 cm x 24 cm will be delivered by its commercial network;

– Every effort will be made to provide the service, but delivery standards will not be guaranteed;

– All other packages will be subject to delayed service;

– This measure will remain in effect until further notice.

· Russia – Owing to the quarantine measures implemented in Moscow to minimize the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) and the fact that the principal office of exchange for imports is located in Moscow, Russian Post is unable to guarantee compliance with delivery standards.

· Germany – Deutsche Post has implemented supplementary measures to reduce direct interaction with customers at their doorstep, in accordance with physical distancing requirements: inbound items requiring a payment by the recipient, such as cash-on-delivery (COD) or the payment of customs duties and taxes, will be immediately directed to a postal outlet for collection. Recipients will receive a notification as to which postal outlet is holding their item for collection.

· India – India Post has suspended all international mail exchanges for the time being. A complete countrywide lockdown has been announced until 14 April 2020. However, the postal service is being maintained as an essential service: domestic mail exchanges are continuing, and all international mails received by offices of exchange before 22 March 2020 are being delivered, though with limited staff, and subject to strict regulations announced by the government.The current situation will have a major impact on quality of service for all types of inbound and outbound mail. In these circumstances, India Post can no longer guarantee service delivery standards (including delivery times and other quality parameters).