Zimbabwe’s postal and courier second quarter revenue declined by 2.1 percent to ZWL$69.4 million from ZWL$70.9 million in the previous quarter due to a slump in mail volumes, the regulator said. As expected due to inflationary pressures in the market, operating costs by postal and courier operators rose 13 percent to ZWL58.7 million from ZWL51.9 million in the first quarter of 2020.
In its latest report, the Postal and Telecommunications Regulatory Authority of Zimbabwe (POTRAZ) said Covid-19 pandemic hit the postal and courier sector the hardest. This is evidenced by the huge drop in volumes across all service categories. “The pandemic exacerbated the substitution of paper communication by electronic methods,” POTRAZ stated.
“International courier volumes, which are a major source of income for postal and courier operators, declined significantly as people and businesses resorted to sending documents electronically.” POTRAZ said there were also challenges in channeling items to and from several destinations due to lockdown policies in different countries. However, postal and courier volumes are poised to improve in the coming quarters “as restrictions are eased globally and Industry fully reopens.”
The performance of the sector continues to be dependent on the economic environment. Economic environment affects the sector through service demand and consumption levels, operating costs and investment. “Given the apparent stabilization of the exchange rate that is emerging, there is optimism that the sector is poised for growth going into the future,” it said.
Zimbabwean dollar continued to gain on the US dollar after it appreciated 1.21% on the 13th auction yesterday. In the outlook, POTRAZ said operating cost containment remains crucial for operators to remain profitable especially for those services that are reporting reduced demand.