On 1st December 2022, the Public Utilities Commission (PUC) approved the tariffs of the universal postal service (UPS) submitted by Latvijas Pasts following an assessment. The new tariffs for letter-post items and postal parcels will be effective from 1st January 2023, while the tariffs for subscription-based press delivery services will take effect on 1st March 2023.
“The overall costs of Latvijas Pasts have increased as a result of the increase in salaries and in fuel, heating, electricity and other costs. At the same time, the share of the universal postal service in the basket of services provided by Latvijas Pasts is shrinking, meaning that fewer and fewer consumers use these services. Considering that the number of postal items is declining faster than the costs attributable to these services, the tariffs for these services are rising,” PUC’s Chair Alda Ozola points out, commenting on the UPS tariffs assessed and approved by PUC.
For example, a domestic ordinary Class A letter-post item weighing up to 20 g will cost EUR 1.65 instead of the previous EUR 1.20, whereas a domestic registered parcel (from 1 kg to 2 kg) will cost EUR 6.21 instead of the previous EUR 2.97. Meanwhile, tariff changes for cross-border postal services are not so sharp. Namely, sending an ordinary Class A letter-post item to the USA weighing up to 20 g will cost EUR 1.83 instead of the previous EUR 1.67, while sending a registered parcel to the USA (not exceeding 1 kg) will cost EUR 25.05 instead of the previous EUR 23.91.
In turn, the discount for the registration of registered letter-post items and parcels in Mans pasts (My Post) environment will be increased from the current EUR 0.49 to EUR 0.59.
Also in the future, tariffs for cross-border letter-post items will be categorised into fourteen groups of countries and territories, while cross-border parcels will be classified into eight groups of countries and territories.
At the same time, PUC draws attention to the fact that a surcharge of 2% of the insured amount must be additionally paid for insured cross-border parcels, which is not a regulated service. Latvijas Pasts offers a services calculator that can help you to find out exactly what it will cost to send a postal item. You can calculate the new tariffs in the calculator starting on 1st January 2023: https://www.pasts.lv/lv/kategorija/pakalpojumu_kalkulators.
On 1st March 2023, the tariffs for subscription-based press delivery services approved by PUC will also come into force. The actual payments of the press publishers for the delivery of the subscription-based press will depend on the Payment Procedure for Delivery Services of the Subscription-Based Press determined by the Cabinet of Ministers. This procedure is expected to be revised at the beginning of next year along with the question of the state budget for 2023, as provided for in the informative report On the Current Situation Regarding Support for the Delivery of Subscription-based Press from 2023, examined at the meeting of the Cabinet of Ministers on 29 November 2022.
Postal operators will remain obliged to comply with a number of essential quality requirements related to the collection, sorting, transportation and delivery of postal items (frequency, speed and regularity), the place of provision of postal services, the number of letter-boxes and their location, as well as the delivery times of the subscription-based press.
More information about the new UPS tariffs of Latvijas Pasts can be found in the decision published on the PUC website.
Latvijas Pasts submitted the draft tariff amendments for consideration by PUC on 19 July 2022. On 19 August 2022, PUC organised a hearing, where representatives of Latvijas Pasts presented the nature and economic rationale of the developed draft tariffs. Representatives of the Ministry of Culture, Ministry of Transport, Liepāja City Council, Jēkabpils Municipality Council, Jūrmala City Council, Valmiera Municipality Council, Latvian Association of Press Publishers, Izdevniecība Rīgas Viļņi SIA, Izdevniecība Dienas Mediji SIA and Saldus Zeme II SIA took part in the hearing.
In the course of the assessment, PUC repeatedly asked the postal operator to submit additional information, clarifications and explanations, which the operator regularly provided, as well as made an adjustment in the draft tariffs. After assessing the justification of the costs forming the tariffs, PUC concluded that the draft tariffs were economically justified and appropriately calculated to cover the costs of the UPS of Latvijas Pasts and ensure its profitability.
The universal postal service (UPS) is the minimum aggregate of postal services of a specific quality available for a unified tariff to all users in Latvia regardless of their geographical location. The UPS provider is obliged to ensure the delivery of domestic and cross-border letter-post items and postal parcels as well as the delivery of subscription-based press.
Service tariffs in the postal sector are determined by the postal operator, but approved by PUC. In accordance with the Postal Law, PUC is obliged to determine the UPS provider through a tender procedure and to supervise the provision of postal services, including UPS, as well as the compliance with the regulations of the postal sector.
The UPS obligations have been determined for SJSC Latvijas Pasts through the tender procedure for five years: from 1st January 2022 to 31th December 2026.
PUC approves the tariffs without value added tax (VAT), and the indicated rates are without VAT.