DMA's Prescott Presents UPU Consultative Committee Chairman's Report at 24th Universal Postal Congress in Geneva
July 28, 2008 — Direct Marketing Association (DMA) Vice President of International Development Charles Prescott is attending the 24th Universal Postal Congress in Geneva, Switzerland. Prescott also is the chairman of the Universal Postal Union’s (UPU) Consultative Committee (CC).
During his report to the Congress on CC activities, Prescott announced that the Committee, during the next four-year cycle, would focus on address systems and change of address systems, as well as the related subject of sustainable development.
“Addresses are the structural core of the postal system,” Prescott told delegates convened in Geneva. “Consequently, the availability and accuracy of addresses are critical elements in the health of both domestic systems and the international postal network.”
“They are a huge public good, and this asset is used for a large number of important societal purposes,” Prescott said. “In addition to communication, those purposes include land-use planning, public service delivery, emergency response, and so forth. During the coming cycle our Committee intends to explore in depth all the issues surrounding those two themes: available addresses, and accurate addresses.”
Additionally, Prescott said that the CC will focus on the environmental impact of poorly addressed mail, which is one of the UPU’s core postal strategies. Prescott referred to Postmaster General John E. Potter’s goal for the US Postal Service (USPS) to reduce by 50 percent the $2 billion problem of undeliverable mail in the US as an indication of the seriousness of the problem.
In addition to focusing on sustainable development at the CC’s plenary meeting this coming November, when it will invite speakers from the direct mail and addressing software communities to present their experiences of working with the Posts, Prescott said the CC intends to hold an international conference on these subjects, called “The Global Addressing Summit” in Spring 2009.
The 24th Universal Postal Congress, which convened on July 23, is attracting more than 2,000 delegates from the UPU's 191 member countries. Through August 12, they will discuss the major issues affecting the global postal sector today.
The Universal Postal Congress is the supreme authority of the Union and brings together plenipotentiaries of all member countries.
Although Congress' main function is legislative, the recent tendency has been to focus more on strategic and broad policy issues and the 2008 Congress will adopt a World Postal Strategy that will serve as a roadmap for member countries and UPU bodies until the next Congress in 2012.
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