Fast rate, slow rate, delivery of packages … Individuals and businesses are affected by this increase in the price of stamps.
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4.7% increase on average for all mail rates but the increase will be more severe for the stamp which is still the most used (red stamp for a priority letter, theoretically delivered the next day): + 12%. Concretely, the red stamp will increase from Saturday by 15 cents to go from 1.28 euros to 1.43 euros. The green stamp (for a cover supposed to be distributed within 48 hours in mainland France) will drop from € 1.08 to € 1.16.
La Poste cannot set its own rates because it performs public service missions. She has a regulator,L’Regulatory Authority for Electronic Communications, Posts and Press Distribution (Arcep), which is more often presented as the telecoms policeman but which also has, for historical reasons, the supervision of the postal services. Arcep listens to the group’s requests in terms of prices and then decides. In 2018, the Authority adopted a new accounting rule which increases the burden borne by La Poste in terms of universal service.
We must compensate for the decline in traditional mail. La Poste’s mail activity is down by almost 10% each year, which represents hundreds of millions of euros in turnover less. Faced with emails, traditional mail now represents less than a quarter of La Poste’s total turnover. It is not the correspondence of individuals that poses the most problem – each household consumes on average around 40 euros worth of stamps per year. What weighs is the dematerialization of administrative and professional letters such as internet taxes, electricity bills via the web, teletransmission between the doctor and mutual insurance companies, etc.
La Poste also explains that behind the increase in the price of stamps, there is the desire to maintain a good level of service quality. This is not always the opinion of certain unions. The latter generally see each further increase in the price of the stamp as an opportunity to boost profits at the expense of users. La Poste must constantly adapt its activity. So far, it has negotiated its digital switch very well.