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Sunday, November 20, 2011

South Sudan addresses UPU forum for first time

South Sudan has announced its Post is open for business in its first address to the UPU's Council of Administration.
On Wednesday, 9 November, Telecommunications and Postal Services Minister Madut Biar Yel said the new government is committed to providing basic services, including postal services, to its people.
"Like other sectors of the economy, postal services were almost entirely brought to their knees after 50 years of war. The few post offices we had were entirely destroyed… and we basically had to start from scratch,” the minister told delegates by live link-up from Juba, the capital.
Since the country gained statehood in July 2011, some progress has been made in rebuilding the postal network. Five state post offices are now operational. The minister added that the fledgling nation had issued its own stamps and the training of postal staff had begun. Work is also underway on developing the legal and regulatory framework for postal services.
For its part, the UPU is providing technical assistance to the new nation. The Union recently issued two international mail processing centre (IMPC) codes to the offices of exchange in Juba and Malakal. IMPC codes facilitate international postal operations. The UPU is also liaising with South Sudan in areas such as letter post, parcels, express mail services and addressing.
Biar Yel thanked the Union for welcoming the new nation into the fold after its application for membership was formally accepted in October 2011. It became the UPU’s 192nd member. “We are extremely hopeful that, with our admission to the UPU, we shall be able to learn quickly from regional and global best practices… to catch up and be fully integrated in the global postal ecosystem,” the minister added.
South Sudan has more than eight million inhabitants and is a federation of ten states, subdivided into 86 counties.

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