ERGP Stakeholder dialogue
Bucharest hosted on 19 November 2014 the first stakeholder workshop of the European Regulators Group for Postal Services (ERGP), where more than 150 representatives of over 30 European regulators and important stakeholders in the postal services field discussed the perspectives and sustainability of the universal postal service (US) at EU level.
A series of factors manifest in the European postal market, such as the dynamic growth of the express and parcels service segments in the context of the development of electronic commerce and the drop in traffic of the traditional postal items, made evident the need for an analysis of the users’ needs, the evolution and sustainability of the universal service obligations in the field. In order to assess the issues and identify the best solutions, the ERGP workshop hosted by ANCOM (the Romanian regulator in the postal sector and holder of the ERGP chairmanship in 2014) gathered active stakeholders of the European postal market (Universal Service providers, alternative postal services providers, industry and consumer associations a.s.o.), representatives of the Universal Postal Union (UPU) and of the European Commission, as well as representatives of the ERGP member regulatory authorities.
The basis for the debate was the Discussion paper on the implementation of Universal Service in the postal sector and the effects of recent changes in some countries on the scope of the USO elaborated by the ERGP and posted under public consultation for the past two months. The participants were invited to express their opinions on the issues raised by the Discussion Paper, especially as regards the definition of the US scope and the financing mechanism, as well as on the designation of the universal servide providers and the impact of the universal service obligation on the competition in the postal services market, while analysing the long-term effects of market evolutions on the sustainability of the USO.
The workshop hosted by ANCOM is part of a biannual project of the ERGP dedicated to assessing the implementation of the US obligations in the postal services field in the perspective of market development. The findings in the Discussion Paper and the viewpoints expressed during the public consultation and during the Bucharest workshop will be gathered in an ERGP Report on the implementation of universal service in the postal sector and the analysis of the impact of market evolution on the scope and long-term sustainability of the US provision, due to be published at the end of 2015.
ERGP is the European body created in order to advise and assist the European Commission in consolidating the internal market for postal services. ERGP has the mission to facilitate the consultation, coordination and cooperation between the EU regulatory authorities with a view to consistent implementation of the Postal Services Directive in the EU Member States. ERGP gathers the national regulatory authorities in the postal services field in the EU Member States.
The workshop was opened by the ANCOM President and ERGP Chair for 2014, Catalin MARINESCU, the debates were moderated by Jack HAMANDE (BIPT), Vice-Chairman ERGP 2014, whereas Camilla SEBASTIANI (AGCOM) - Co-president of the ERGP Net Cost Sub-group and Lars FORSLUND, (PTS), Co-chairman of the same sub-group were the rapporteurs of this meeting.