I am delighted to introduce this first edition of our Your IPC newsletter. We all hope that 2021 will mark the start of the recovery and of the return to a more normal life. The postal industry has not been spared by the ongoing COVID-19 crisis but posts have shown their resilience and adaptability. However, the crisis accelerated the trends in the markets and the much-needed postal transformation.

The huge increase in e-commerce volumes observed during the past year is here to stay. Posts are rapidly moving into the highly competitive e-commerce delivery market where posts are not only competing with parcel integrators but also with large e-retailer platforms. The main challenge for the year ahead for posts is to ensure that their e-commerce offering meet the customers’ needs. IPC will continue supporting posts through this journey. 

One of the most important requirements for posts is to provide customers with a full overview of the costs, including possible customs charges, as already provided by main competitors. The roll out as of the beginning of this year of the IPC PDDP (Postal Delivered Duty Paid) solution will therefore be an essential tool for posts to increase their competitiveness on e-commerce delivery markets.

As of March, the IPC COMETS (Centralised Operational Message Exchange and Translation System) service will be operational, allowing posts to meet the ICS2 electronic declaration obligation for all goods imported in the European Union customs territory. 

The volume of tracked items transported through the INTERCONNECT network will continue to pursue the increasing trend observed in 2020.

2021 will also be an important milestone for IPC Global Customer Service System (GCSS), currently linking 291 postal customer service centres across 191 countries. GCSS will receive a major upgrade in phases throughout 2021 to bring sharper focus upon existing established processes and, in addition, will provide new features. 

GCSS access and full usage for EMS inquiries shall be maintained during full-year 2021. This maintains IPC’s strong commitment to assisting posts promptly resolve their international customer inquiries. All GCSS users including EMS shall benefit from the 2021 scheduled GCSS feature upgrades, the regular maintenance and the IPC Helpdesk customer support service. We look forward to your continued use of GCSS “as a convenient one-stop shop” to assist you in servicing EMS customer inquiries alongside those of all other tracked mail products PRIME, UPU Air Parcels, EPG and INTERCONNECT.