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Sign up for the revolution against ‘catastrophic’ AusPost price hikes

Wednesday, 12 August 2015
By Graham Osborne

Australian mailing house D&D Mailing Services is leading an industry campaign against what it calls massive and unprecedented price rises announced by Australia Post.

“These price increases need to be stopped and we believe it is time to act and have a collective voice,” said David Docherty, director, D&D Mailing Services. “We would now like to encourage everyone, the more the better, to write to both ministers and local representatives with a view to having this massive increase stopped.”

Australia Post has proposed lifting the base rate of postage – currently at $0.70 cents – to $1.00 for regular delivery or $1.50 for priority.

“This represents an overall increase of 42%, which is unprecedented for Australia Post and I would say for any business across the globe,” said Docherty. “They have advised a small group of customers that business mail will also be facing these type of increases (42%) in a staged manner, being that a 4% increase for business mail (regular barcode mail – such as financial statements and direct marketing material) in October 2015, followed by the balance of 38% increase scheduled for January 2016.

“All of the Australian community will be affected. Regional areas will be the first to suffer because bulk mailers will cull their mailing lists due to the high price. Regional routes will become too costly and Australia Post will no longer distribute mail to the regional areas.

“The ramifications of these increases will be catastrophic for all of the associated industries that support the production and development of the medium of mail – including mailing houses, printers, paper and machine manufacturers and numerous supporting agencies,” he said.

D&D also launched a petition through change.org calling on Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull to intervene immediately to stop the proposed increases.

“I have written to the Minister for Communications, The Hon. Malcolm Turnbull, about the concerns of my company and the customers that we represent,” said Docherty. “To say we were disappointed in the response is an understatement and clearly it should have been marked, ‘Written and Authorised by Australia Post.'”

Docherty accuses the national carrier of having “a hidden agenda…to simply walk away from their community obligation of the ‘reserved service’ and hopefully wipe their hands of what is no doubt a very large logistical process.

“We believe that Australia Post has used the drop in reserved letter volume to soften the Abbott government to deregulate letter prices, reduce community expectations about service levels while planning to aggressively expand into the businesses they really want to be in such as small parcels. As a monopoly, it is unbelievable that an organisation can simply turn its back on the industries that have supported and developed the infrastructure and software capabilities that it enjoys without the threat of competition.

“When Ford and Holden effectively pulled out of Australia everyone was up in arms about the subsequent job losses for all of this and associated industries,” said Docherty. “I believe that the effect of these increases will be as devastating for our industry and can see thousands of jobs disappear, particularly in New South Wales and Victoria. Most of these workers are long term, baseline factory floor employees who will find it difficult to find work elsewhere. D&D Mailing Services employ over 100 employees and I fear for our workers that we will have to cut staff as a result of the reduction in mailing work due to these increases.”

D&D Mailing currently spends up to $18 million with Australia Post annually and dispatches about 85 million mail pieces a year on behalf of customers.

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