New analysis has found the economy could have been a lot worse off from the coronavirus crisis, if it weren’t for the efforts of Australia Post.
While majority of Australian businesses suffered weaker revenue over the last few months, with the nation under lockdown restrictions, Australia Post provided a much needed lifeline for businesses by allowing them to continue operating online.
Deloitte has found that the Posties’ efforts during the three months to May 2020 facilitated an additional $2.4 billion in e-commerce compared to the same time last year.
ARTICLE CONTINUES AFTER THIS ADVERTISEMENT
The number of parcel deliveries increased by 26 million on the 2019 figures, with activity in regional Australia increasing at a faster rate than metropolitan areas.
Food, liquor, homewares and appliances stood out as the top categories for growth in Australia Post parcel deliveries in the COVID lockdown, while variety stores and fashion retailers gained sales momentum during the three-month period.
Australia Post CEO Christine Holgate says it’s a credit to the direct workforce of 36,000 people, but is also happy to see an additional 25,000 full-time equivalent local jobs supported each month during the pandemic.
“It’s very clear Australia Post has played a critical role in keeping the country running during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Not only have we supported business to trade online, for every three workers employed by Australia Post, another two jobs in other businesses and industries have been supported, many in small and medium businesses.
“I’m so proud of the way we have stepped up and kept many Australian businesses alive. Australia Post really has become the ‘BusinessKeeper’ of the national economy.
“This new analysis underlines the fundamental role Australia Post plays in connecting communities and businesses across Australia,” Ms Holgate said.
Communications Minister Paul Fletcher says the Deloitte shows Australia Post has been critical this year.
“The Deloitte report underlines the vital role Australia Post has performed during the COVID-19 pandemic in serving the increased parcel delivery needs of Australians and their small businesses as people moved their economic activity online, particularly those in rural and regional locations.
“It further highlights why the Government agreed to grant temporary regulatory relief to Australia Post so it could meet the increasing parcel volumes by redeploying around 2000 posties to work in the growing part of the business delivering parcels instead of letters, which are sharply declining during the pandemic,” Minister Fletcher said.
The full analysis is available at auspost.com.au/publications.