The rise of electronic-commerce, increasing demand from consumers for sustainable products and services has positioned the post office as an ideal platform for small micro and medium enterprises(SMMEs) to use to take services to the masses.
Deliberating on the optimisation of postal networks and innovation for the future of global e-commerce at the Transport and Energy Summit on Wednesday, BotswanaPost Chief Executive Officer Cornelius Ramatlhakwane said e-commerce is growing at a significant rate.
“We are able to do cross border money transfers between ourselves because we have that mandate and this should be at country level before going global .So you can see there is a lot of potential, therefore postal operators need to earn the right to innovate by stepping up their game by further optimising their current operations, boosting operational excellence in sorting transport, pick up, delivery and other neglected business support functions ,”said Ramatlhakwane.
With the core mandate of postal operators defined in the areas of letters, parcels and cash, the retail e-commerce sales are estimated at US$ 5.7 trillion worldwide in the year 2022 alone. Further, the figure is predicted to grow by 56 percent to reach US$ 8.1 trillion by 2026.
“The post must strategically position itself and facilitate progressive global e-commerce as it has the widest footprint nationally and also service a diverse clientele base. With this, postal operators will become valued suppliers in e-commerce and regain lost market share and be able to integrate the expanding cross border business to business e-commerce market and commercial cargo into the global postal network, “He said.
With 250 outlets,over 500 delivery points and 1200 employees nationally,BotswanaPost has already made a giant step towards e-commerce with projects such as PosoMoney and virtual post box just to mention a few.
With regard to exploring promising technologies and innovations for a green future,Ramatlhakwane said BotswanaPost are owners of the biggest fleet at national level therefore that positions them as agents of change.
“We are doing trials to install solar across our offices. Already we have four solar powered outlets in Botswana and three electric motorbikes which are part of our fleet. We are also considering delivery of mail using drones for areas which are in the same vicinity or covers a shorter distance ,”Said Ramatlhakwane on BotswanaPost’s mission to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.