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Postal Services Important Element Of Development

Postal services a key element of development, says Ban Ki-moon

30 April 2008 - Marking the 60th anniversary of the Universal Postal Union (UPU) as a United Nations agency, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has highlighted the important role of postal services, especially at a time when hundreds of millions of people have relocated from their country of origin and are anxious to share news and resources with their relatives.

"You may be one of the smallest specialized agencies, but the work you are doing is key to the broader mission of our Organization," Mr. Ban said on Monday while at the UPU's headquarters in Bern, Switzerland.

The Secretary-General said that the postal sector makes a well-known contribution to development, and pointed out that the UPU helps developing countries develop trade-related infrastructure and supply capacity, especially in Africa.

"The capacity of postal services to provide information, goods and fund transfers can lend valuable support to the growth of small businesses in developing countries and help them to access markets in industrialized States," he stated.

The UPU is the primary forum for cooperation between national postal services. It establishes the rules for international mail exchange among its 191 members and makes recommendations on increasing the volume of mail, and on improving the quality of services. Each year, 5 million postal workers deliver over 433 billion letters domestically, and 5.5 billion internationally, as well as over 6 billion parcels.

ENDS

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