Posten Norge, like other postal companies in Europe, has invested in logistics and parcel distribution to compensate for declining mail volumes. This expansion has been achieved through, among other things, acquisitions of logistics companies, and is financed through Posten Norge's profits and sales of assets. This strategy has been widely supported by the Storting (the Norwegian parliament.)
We operate in a market characterised by fierce competition. We are constantly looking for ways to operate more effectively to ensure competitive services and prices. Effective operation of terminals and transport has become an integral part of Posten Norge's operations. We achieve economies of scale wherever we can. Logistics is a natural outgrowth of postal operations. The vehicles are filled with mail, parcels and goods to ensure cost-effective deliveries to customers across the country and to reduce emissions.
Mail distribution is not the same as railway tracks
In an appeal to the Minister of Trade and Industry, Schenker demands that Posten Norge's infrastructure be separated from the Mail and Logistics business areas just as rail infrastructure has been separated from train operations and transport services. This comparison is unreasonable. No one would dream of proposing developing alternative railway lines to ensure competition in the rail sector. But it is crucial for healthy competition that Schenker and others further develop their own terminals and logistics systems, as Posten Norge has done, to strengthen their service offerings to businesses and consumers alike.
Free access to in-store post offices
Over the last 20 years Posten Norge has reduced the number of post offices and entered into agreements on in-store post offices. The in-store post office network is not a state-financed infrastructure. We pay ongoing operating costs to the stores for the work they perform on behalf of Posten Norge. Posten Norge's exclusivity agreement in this area ended in 2006. Anyone can avail themselves of this offering by entering into an agreement with Posten Norge or directly with the stores.
Posten Norge has delivered letters and parcels for 370 years. Experience, of course, gives us a competitive edge. No one knows Norway better. But history and tradition are not enough to succeed in a market which, due to digitalisation, has changed faster than was possible to predict just a few years ago. Posten Norge was among the first to make logistics a new competitive advantage. Without this, postal services in Norway would be significantly more expensive. Competition works!
Elisabeth H. Gjølme
Executive Vice President Communications in Posten Norge