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Solomons Post and Solomon Airlines mark World Post Day

Posted on October 09, 2020 at 02:00 PM in General News

With over 95 percent of mail in the Solomon Islands delivered by air, in the belly of Solomon Airlines’ Twin Otters, Dash 8 and Airbus A320 aircraft, ‘2020 World Post Day’ celebrated on 9 October, is particularly significant for Solomons Post and Solomon Airlines, due to the impact of Covid-19.

Countries across the world participate annually in celebrations to mark World Post Day, which is the anniversary of the establishment of the Universal Postal Union in 1874 in the Swiss Capital, Bern.

With a global network comprising more than 650,000 offices and 5.3 million staff and postal services mandated by many governments, the post is unparalleled in its ability to deliver to anyone, anywhere.

Postal services everywhere, including in Solomon Islands, provide essential social and financial services.

As COVID-19 impacted the world, postal operators in many countries quickly stepped in to offer everything from delivering critical personal protective equipment to testing kits, medications, and educational materials.

In Solomon Islands, Solomons Post plays a critical role in the community and economy and for decades has depended upon Solomon Airlines international and inter-island flight operations to keep the postal service moving.

“Most post is delivered by air and of course our service to Solomon Islands has been greatly affected by border closure and controls especially due to restricted inbound and outbound flights internationally,” said Mr. Alfred Kituru Ghemu, CEO of Solomons Post.

“Approximately 95% of our mail is delivered by air,” said Mr Kituru Ghemu.

“Solomon Airlines is our sole carrier of mail and the ceasing of regular scheduled international flying has unavoidably affected our services within the country,” he said.

“We cannot do without airline service, while shipping does exist, it is not ideal for the demand on our postal service.”

Solomon Post is part of the network of Designated Operators of around 192 countries. As well as mail delivery, its mainstream businesses are eCommerce and digital financial services tagged with last-mile delivery.

“In this digital era, we also provide digital financial services to facilitate payments in-country so that local eCommerce can also be groomed internally. ECommerce is extremely important to Solomon Post, in fact, it is our main business income now,” he added. 

Postal networks worldwide share electronic data interchange including declarations for purposes of safety and security.  The Post complies with IATA and WCO in its shipment regulations and mail track and tracing services come from the EDI data interchange.

“As the national carrier we are very aware of the importance of keeping our country’s postal service capability moving as fast and as far as possible, now and at all times,” said Colin Sigimanu, Commercial Manager, Solomon Airlines.

“Throughout the Solomon Islands we depend upon efficient and reliable air service to move not just our people, but our parcels and letters and many forms of cargo,” he said.

“Currently while our scheduled international flying has temporarily ceased due to Covid-19, we have operated special cargo-only flights between Australia and Solomon Islands and we are maintaining a reduced but very regular service to 23 destinations across our islands.

“During Covid-19 it is absolutely essential that members of the public, commercial businesses, and organisations are able to continue necessary communications by letter and conduct their commercial activities via airmail and freight, using the services of Solomons Post.”

The theme for this year’s World Post Day is “More than Mail” which is very appropriate, as our goal is the be a major enabler of economic activities in Solomon Islands,” Mr Kituru Ghemu added.

“People will increasingly notice changes in our postal operation’s services.  We are increasingly using technology to drive many aspects of our business and there are many more opportunities in the Postal World which are also opening up for the Solomon Islands. 

“In the past, now and in the future, Solomon Airlines is our major partner for postal delivery country-wide and internationally.  Our growth and success are very dependent upon the relationships we have with our valued partners like our national carrier,” he said.

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