Talks pave the way for resumption of mail services in Somalia

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Somali Minister Abdullahi E. Hersi (r.) calls for help to rebuild his country’s postal sector with UPU DG Bishar A. Hussein present

After 23 years with no postal services, Somalia could soon start receiving international mail.

Somalia's minister of information, posts, telecommunication and transports, Abdullahi E. Hersi, has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the acting president of the Emirates Post Group, Fahad Al Hosani, under which the parties commit to negotiating the details of an agreement that would see Dubai act as a hub for handling mail destined for Somalia in the future. The plan is to enable global Posts to forward international mail for Somalia to Dubai, where it could then be transferred to the office of international mail exchange in Mogadishu using airlines flying into the Somali capital.

Minister Hersi said "it is time for the government to provide postal services", adding that "People may have the internet and phones, but these will never replace the benefit of receiving mail from a distance".

The postal network is basically non-existent today in Somalia – a country with a population of nearly 10 million people. In 1991, Somalia had some 100 post offices. Today, there is one general post office in the capital, Mogadishu.

The Universal Postal Union (UPU) facilitated the talks between the two parties as part of its development cooperation efforts.

UPU Director General Bishar A. Hussein said the agreement signaled an important step toward launching mail services again in Somalia, but it is just the beginning,

Donn Bobb, United Nations

Duration: 1’23″

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