New UPU report shows reducing postal development gaps key to harnessing e-commerce opportunities

08.10.2019 - Switzerland tops annual postal index, Netherlands and Germany in second and third place.

The Universal Postal Union’s third annual ranking of global postal services has found that reducing development gaps between regions could accelerate postal volumes of cross-border e-commerce.

“Postal networks have the potential to lead the way in providing both citizens and businesses with affordable access to the economy through the delivery of e-commerce items, but for the entire sector to benefit from this opportunity it will have to work to reduce inequalities across the network,” said UPU Director General Bishar A. Hussein.

The Postal Development Report 2019 measures the development of postal operators in 172 countries using the UPU’s wealth of postal big data, official postal statistics and surveys. The comparative ranking, known as the Integrated Index for Postal Development (2IPD), is based on four dimensions of performance: reliability, reach, relevance and resilience.

The 2019 report finds that the gaps in postal development have been increasing over the past year, constituting potential hurdles in the development of cross border e-commerce, which is one the fastest growth areas for postal operators. The report finds that decreasing these gaps, particularly between regions, would contribute to promoting international parcel flows.

Industrial countries received an average grade of 68.9 out of 100 in the index, up one point from 2018, while average scores for Eastern Europe and the Commonwealth of Independent States (49.8), Asia-Pacific (29.5), Arab region (27.29), Latin America (22.7) and Africa (20.6) provided evidence of the growing gap.

Standout performance

Switzerland’s postal service took first place in the ranking for the third year running, thanks to its leading scores for relevance and resilience, as well as improvements in its reliability and reach. Improvements in quality of service and reach helped the Netherlands retain second place in 2019. Germany ranked third for the first time owing to increased volumes and faster service.

Despite inequalities between regions, standout performers yielded encouraging results. Poland, China (People’s Rep.), Tunisia, Colombia and Nigeria each led in their respective regions.

To read the full report, please visit:


The Universal Postal Union is a UN specialized agency with its headquarters in the Swiss capital Berne. Established in 1874, it is one of the world’s oldest international organizations and is the primary forum for cooperation between postal sector players.


For further information, please contact:


David Dadge

Communication and Events Manager,

Universal Postal Union (UPU)

Executive Office Directorate

Work Telephone : + 41 31 350 31 23

Mobile Telephone: + 41 76 457 36 54


Press release


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  1. Dirk at 19.01.2016
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