Proposals for Postal Act amendments and newspaper delivery support sent out for comments

Press release 18.10.2021 16.30 fi sv en

The Ministry of Transport and Communications requests comments on a draft government proposal to amend the Postal Act and on a draft government decree on temporary support for the delivery of newspapers. The deadline for comments is 28 November 2021.

The draft government proposal would replace the current five-day collection and delivery system included in the universal postal service by a three-day system.

In addition, the draft proposal would introduce a temporary government grant for newspaper delivery alongside the three-day collection and delivery system. The government grant would be available to areas lacking commercial early-morning delivery of newspapers and a fully comprehensive five-day delivery system. The framework conditions for the government grant would be added to the Postal Act.

According to the draft proposal, universal service providers would be obligated to notify the Finnish Transport and Communications Agency of their collection and delivery days at least six months before they start collection and delivery. The current procurement procedure for universal service providers would be removed from the Postal Act.

In addition, the draft proposal would define the public administrative tasks under the Constitution that are currently entrusted on Posti Ltd and amend the related rules based on a decision by the Deputy Parliamentary Ombudsman.

The proposals are based on the final report of the Working Group of State Secretaries.

The Postal Act prescribes that a permanent universal postal service must be provided under equal terms throughout the country. At present, universal postal service items must be collected and delivered five days a week.

The aim is to secure five-day newspaper delivery

The Government proposes to enact a government decree on support for the delivery of newspapers. The decree would remain in force until 31 December 2027. The support would be available for early-morning delivery of newspapers on the days Posti Ltd is not obliged to provide universal postal service under the Postal Act.

The objective of the draft decree is to enable five-day delivery of newspapers in areas currently lacking five-day delivery. This would ensure access to socially significant communications, support the diversity of news services and promote multifaceted quality communications.

The grant recipients would be selected through competitive tendering. In exchange for the government grant, the recipients would commit themselves to five-day delivery during the support period for the price specified in the competitive tendering.

The government decree on support for the delivery of newspapers is scheduled to enter into force as soon as possible after the proposed amendments to the Postal Act enter into force.

What next

The request for comments has been published at www.lausuntopalvelu.fi. Organisations and private individuals are invited to comment online or by email to kirjaamo@lvm.fi.

Public officials at the Ministry of Transport and Communications will continue preparing the act and the government decree following the consultation round.

The government proposal for an act amending the Postal Act is scheduled to be submitted to Parliament at the end of 2021 or in early 2022 at the latest.

The provisions on government grants for newspaper delivery should enter in force in early 2022 to allow the introduction of the subsidised delivery of newspapers as planned by the beginning of 2023 at the latest.

Inquiries

Postal Act:

Sini Wirén, Director of Unit, tel. +358 40 507 0916

Fanni Thessler, Senior Officer, tel. +358 50 353 5515

Kaarle Vuorinen, Coordinator, tel. +358 50 513 7783

Support for newspaper delivery:

Emmi Nykänen, Ministerial Adviser, tel. +358 50 311 2394

Sara Vänttinen, Senior Specialist, tel. +358 50 473 0277

Konsta Luukka, Senior Specialist, tel. +358 50 476 1595