Arusha: African Countries sensitized on Addressing and Postcodes
The objectives of the Workshop that was held in Tanzania, from 12 to 14 December, 2017, were to follow up on the validation workshop that resulted in the adoption of the study report commissioned by AUC; to sensitize members on addressing and postcode systems and how to secure funding for the projects; to sensitize members on AUC decisions and projects on addressing; to share experiences and benchmark on best practices and to formally distribute guidelines for initiating and implementing national addressing projects.
Twenty nine (29) African countries were represented at the this workshop, and many organizations/Partners as Pan African Postal Union (PAPU); African Union Commission; Universal Postal Union; What3Words; Air-Nest; Esri Global; Vokacom Ghana.
The Official Opening Ceremony was held on Tuesday 12th December 2017 and it covered the following main areas: Welcome Remarks from the Acting Postmaster General of Tanzania Posts Cooperation (TPC), Mr. Hassan Mwang’ombe; Remarks by the representative of the Director General of Tanzania Communications Regulatory Authority (TCRA), Mr Haruni Lemanya; Remarks by the representative of the African Union Commission (AUC), Mr. Christian Minoungou; Speech by the Pan African Postal Union (PAPU) Secretary General, Mr Younouss Djibrine; and Keynote Address by the Guest of Honour Deputy Minister of Transport and Communications of the United Republic of Tanzania, Honourable Eng. Atashasta Justus Nditiye.
OUTCOMES OF THE SENSITIZATION WORKSHOP ON ADDRESSING AND POST CODE SYSTEMS
- An overview of the AUC study on Guidelines for Addressing and Postcode Systems in Africa was presented together with the recommendations contained thereof;
- Next step for all Member states is to come up with implementation plans for addressing project;
- The necessity of an address for the postal business and various stakeholders was emphasized; hence the need for the Post to spearhead such projects in collaboration with all stakeholders;
- The growth in e-commerce volumes in Africa at an average rate of 25% against a world average of 16% calls upon all African countries to expedite implementation of addressing and postcode projects to be able to deliver e-commerce items to the door;
- The UPU is available to provide any technical support that member States would need;
- In view of the increased growth in cross-border mail volumes and e-commerce, a group of African countries interested in becoming compliant with S42 addressing standard was formed. Certification will be valid for 3 years;
- Members were requested to complete the Integration of Geographical information systems in address development questionnaire online;
- Members were informed of the addressing forum to be held during the S3 POC in April 2018 and were urged to participate;
- Different addressing solutions were presented by What3words, Addressing the Unaddressed, Esri Global, Air-Net, Egypt Post and Vocakom. Member States are free to choose one that suits them to come up with addresses and postcodes for their populace;
- Egypt Post offered free hosting on its platform/infrastructure (or an alternative minimal-licensing solution for local hosting) for African Member States for the purpose of addressing and postcodes, and consolidation hub. The UPU congratulated Egypt Post for the innovative solution presented, thanked them for the generous offer made and proposed to further study the solution and the offer;
- Member states shared experiences and best practices on addressing for others to benchmark on. These Member States are also available to assist others in developing their addressing and post code systems;
- The Member States represented came up with action plans for implementation of Addressing and Postcodes projects in their respective countries;
- Emphasize the importance of including informal settlements in addressing development.
Emphasize on effective communication at all stages of the implementation both internal and external.
It was appreciated that addressing and postcode systems was an important project that cuts across many sectors which calls for participation of various stakeholders to achieve socio economic development in Africa. Participants were urged to be drivers of the project in their respective countries.