24.05.2018 - Findings of new UPU report on postal development provides an evidential underpinning for action of postal operators to help lift people out of poverty in countries such as India and Bangladesh.
Now in its second year, the Postal Development Report 2018 of the Universal Postal Union (UPU) clearly demonstrates how the postal sector contributes to Goal 8 of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development by promoting financial inclusion.
According to the report, which includes the Integrated Index for Postal Development operators (or 2IPD), there are two areas where the contributions to the 2030 Agenda and Goal 8 on decent work and economic growth are keenly visible.
The first is the global number of people employed by postal operators. Estimated at 5.32 million people in 2016—comparable to the population of Norway—the figure indicates how operators support inclusion and well-being in societies.
Second, the extensive reach of postal operators. Each post office serves an average of 10,000 people or more and provides people and businesses globally with unrivalled access to a broad financial, logistical and communications network.
UPU’s research also outlines how countries with a greater level of postal development have on average a larger percentage of adults who possess a bank account—a sign of financial inclusion. The findings support a previous UPU study in 2016 titled, Global Panorama on Postal Financial Inclusion that highlighted the vital role of operators in this area.
The study offers firm support for the actions taken by postal operators in isolated or rural areas. In Bangladesh, the post office issued more than 11 million mobile money orders, and a postal cash card service that attracted around 52,000 customers. India Post has also established a payments bank in 2016 driven by the goal to create 650 unique branches designed to improve financial inclusion in over 155,000 villages.
Commenting on the links between postal operators and SDG 8, the Deputy Director General of the UPU Pascal Clivaz said, “In countries all over the world, postal operators are responding to the needs of the poorest sectors of society and offering them financial services. By doing so, they are upholding the finest traditions of the universal service mandate and helping countries achieve the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable development.”
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