Australia Post has submitted to the ACCC for assessment a proposal to increase the price of its ordinary letter services, including stamps.

Australia Post operates a two-speed letter service, which was introduced for consumers in 2016.

Under Australia Post’s proposal, the basic postage rate charged for ordinary small letters delivered to its regular timetable would rise from $1.00 to $1.10.

The price of delivering ordinary large letters at the regular timetable would rise by 10 per cent.

The price of priority labels for delivering ordinary letters at the priority timetable would remain unchanged at 50 cents. Australia Post is also proposing to maintain the price of concession stamps at 60 cents and stamps for seasonal greeting cards at 65 cents.

“In assessing these proposed price increases, we will consider various issues including trends in the postal industry and whether Australia Post has adequately explored efficiency improvements before increasing its letter prices,” ACCC Commissioner Cristina Cifuentes said.

“We will welcome submissions on this proposal and will take into account the views of industry stakeholders, consumers and Australia Post itself.”

Under the Australia Post price notification framework, the ACCC does not have the role of approving the proposed price increase.

Rather, the ACCC is required to assess the proposed price increase in accordance with the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 and then notify Australia Post on whether it objects to the proposed price increase. In addition to the ACCC’s assessment, Australia Post must give written notice to the Minister for Communications of its intent to vary its rates of postage.

Australia Post may increase the basic postage rate only if the Minister does not disapprove the proposed increase to the basic postage rate within 30 days.

The ACCC intends to release its preliminary view on Australia Post’s draft proposal in November 2019.

The ACCC will soon release an issues paper providing further information on Australia Post’s draft proposal and its review by the ACCC with guidance for submissions. More information is available at Australia Post letter pricing 2019