TRA plans new guidelines for postal sector to facilitate ecommerce growth

Muscat - 

With a view to facilitate the growth of ecommerce in Oman, the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA) is in the final stages of preparing regulations and guidelines for the postal services sector.

In a recently released annual report for 2017, TRA indicated that it is in the final stages of preparing guidelines for the postal services sector, primarily to address the aspects of competition and quality of services.

‘The postal sector is witnessing the onset of active ecommerce activities involving all the postal licensees including Oman Post who have established special arrangements for the last-mile delivery of parcels’, H E Dr Mohammed bin Hamad al Rumhi, chairman of TRA, said in the report.

In his comments in the report, H E Dr Hamed Salim al Rawahi, executive president of TRA, said, ‘Ecommerce is gaining momentum and the postal service providers are raising up to the demands of consumers by enhancing their service offerings. They are engaging with last-mile service providers exploiting the ICT tools available for tracking and safe delivery of parcels’.

The need for new regulations covering emerging trends was also necessitated by the decline in traditional mail transactions, which were once primary functions of postal services across the world.

‘In the past few years, the world has seen a decline in transactions using traditional mail due to electronic replacement of this service. This is reflected in the decrease in number of domestic and international transactions’, the report said.

As per the report, although there has been a significant decrease in traditional mail transactions, registered mail transactions from overseas jumped by 58 per cent. Similarly, local and international parcel delivery transactions rose 117 per cent and nine per cent, respectively.

‘International incoming express mail services account for the largest share of postal services, as it comprise 50 per cent of total express mail market. This is indicative of the dynamics of the Omani market and the gradual but continuous growth of ecommerce’, TRA report added.

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