BOTCHED SELL OFF IS THREAT TO RURAL SCOTLAND
The Royal Mail is today warning that rival delivery firms are putting the Universal Service Obligation (USO) at risk. The obligation which ensures delivery of letters to all areas of the UK – and which is hugely important to businesses and individuals in rural areas of Scotland – is being endangered by increased parcel delivery competition hitting revenues. The Head of the Company, Moya Greene has given a stark warning that this is no longer a future problem but that in her words ‘the threat is now’.
Na h-Eileanan an Iar SNP MP, Angus MacNeil said:
‘’The sad thing about this is, it was utterly predictable. In fact the SNP has been raising this since the whole botched Royal Mail sell off.
“The Royal Mail sell off has been nothing but a shambles since day one – and the people who will pay for this incompetence are the individuals and businesses in our islands and other rural parts of Scotland who need and should have the same postal services. A privatised postal service in a competitive market will undoubtedly put pressure on government to reduce the terms of the Universal Service Obligation, as its competitors cherry pick the profitable urban routes leading to a reduced service in rural and less affluent areas. Now we are told there is a ‘material risk’ to the USO – and that the delivery service across the UK will come under ‘unmanageable strain’.
‘’Royal Mail should never have been privatised and it is painfully clear that the UK government should never have sold off a valuable public asset at well below its true value and despite all the warning about the end of the USO. We know the majority of Scots were totally opposed to the privatisation of Royal Mail – more than any other part of the UK. We need a postal service that meets the needs of our communities and one which is brought back into public ownership.’’
BBC report can be read here;
Poll – 77% of Scots oppose Royal Mail privatisation :