Voice Mail
Ep 14: Logistics, technology, and the post, with UNCTAD’s Dr Shamika Sirimanne

Ep 14: Logistics, technology, and the post, with UNCTAD’s Dr Shamika Sirimanne

September 5, 2022

Dr Shamika N. Sirimanne, Director of the Division on Technology and Logistics (UNCTAD) discusses logistics, supply chain, and the role of the post in enabling cross-border trade:

  • UNCTAD's mandate and how it carries out its role
  • Customs automation with ASYCUDA
  • Why some countries are currently benefiting from digital transformation, while others aren't
  • Role of the logistics sector in stimulating digital transformation
  • Impact of COVID-19 on supply chain and postal networks
  • Importance of access to affordable internet access, especially in developing countries
  • Industry 4.0 and global trade flows
  • Using predictive AI to improve efficiencies and reduce carbon footprint
  • Automated System for Customs Data (ASYCUDA) partnership, including UPU and the Customs Declaration System.
  • Leveraging eTrade for All to help small businesses flourish
  • Role of technology in post-pandemic recovery
  • Addressing disparities in digitalisation of trade, especially in the work of UNCTAD, UPU, and other multilateral agencies
  • The emerging data divide between developing nations and major multinational platforms


Ep 13: Global remittances with IFAD’s Pedro de Vasconcelos

Ep 13: Global remittances with IFAD’s Pedro de Vasconcelos

June 28, 2022

Pedro de Vasconcelos, Manager of the Financing Facility for Remittances at the International Fund for Agriculture Development (IFAD), discusses the importance of international remittances to the global economy, as well as opportunities for the postal network. We discuss:

  • Impact of remittances and migrant investments on the socioeconomic development of nations
  • The scale of these remittance contributions globally - hint: it's in the billions!
  • Continuing growth in this financial flow
  • How IFAD works to financially include migrants, small business and other underserved populations via the Financing Facility for Remittances
  • How remittances are put to work in recipient communities
  • Financial literacy and financial inclusion, leading to financial resilience
  • The challenges in ensuring affordable, accessible remittances for migrants, including factors that exclude them from the formal financial system
  • Competition in financial remittances
  • Concerns about security of global remittances, including crime, money laundering, and terrorism financing
  • Remittances that kept communities going, even during the pandemic
  • How the postal network helps and could help provide inclusive finance and remittances
  • Impact of armed conflict on global remittances
  • How posts can maximise their involvement and the positive impact of being part of a global remittance network
  • The aims of the International Day of Family Remittances
  • Remittances can serve the post - more than what many currently perceive


Ep 12: Rodney Taylor, Secretary General of Caribbean Telecommunications Union

Ep 12: Rodney Taylor, Secretary General of Caribbean Telecommunications Union

May 30, 2022

Rodney Taylor, Secretary General of the Caribbean Telecommunications Union, discusses digital transformation and the potential role of the post:

  • The emotion of international mail
  • Innovation in telecommunications and IT in Barbados
  • Digital transformation's critical role in supporting peoples and governments
  • Delivering government services digitally
  • The CTU's role and mandate, from establishment by CARICOM through to understanding the "metaverse"
  • Supporting CARICOM single market and economy through telecommunications
  • Key areas of digital transformation the CTU is working on, including accessing government services online
  • Opportunities for collaboration with postal operators in digital transformation
  • How the pandemic fuelled innovation and development in digital transformation, and partnerships with the post
  • Scope for working with other international organisations
  • Trends in regional e-commerce
  • Inclusion of all social groups in digital transformation
  • .post top level domain and cyber security
  • Raising awareness of cyber crime and cyber security, and including provisions for cyber crime and data protection in legislation
  • International and cross-sector cooperation in internet and data governance


Ep 11: Anja Klug from UNHCR on refugees and the post

Ep 11: Anja Klug from UNHCR on refugees and the post

May 3, 2022

Anja Klug, Head of the Office for Switzerland and Liechtenstein at the UNHCR - the UN refugee agency, discusses the UNHCR's role and the role of postal networks. We discuss: 

  • What the UNHCR does, and how it differs from other humanitarian organisations
  • Impact of the conflict in Ukraine on refugees
  • UNHCR support for refugees
  • UNHCR Ukraine partnering with Ukrainian postal operator Ukposhta
  • Cooperation with postal operators to offer services for internally displaced persons
  • Leveraging post offices' position in the centre of communities to facilitate support services for refugees and internally displaced persons
  • Offering support to vulnerable and young refugees
Ep 10: Tipti CEO Pierangela Sierra

Ep 10: Tipti CEO Pierangela Sierra

March 31, 2022
Pierangela Sierra, founder and CEO of online shopping and delivery platform Tipti, and an e-trade women's advocate, joins us to discuss e-commerce, growth and opportunities, and encouraging women entrepreneurs: 
  • Using the mail to keep in touch
  • What Tipti is, and how it was created
  • Mobile and internet adoption in Ecuador
  • The pandemic's impact on online grocery
  • Future growth in e-commerce in Ecuador and Latin America
  • The role of the post in encouraging e-commerce
  • Environmental impact of e-commerce delivery
  • Gender equality and forging a career in Latin America
  • Startups and women
  • Female representation in Tipti, and empowering women
  • How UNCTAD helps women and entrepreneurs
Ep 9: Dr Amani Abou-Zeid, African Union Commissioner for Infrastructure and Energy

Ep 9: Dr Amani Abou-Zeid, African Union Commissioner for Infrastructure and Energy

February 24, 2022

Dr Armani Abou-Zeid, African Union Commissioner for Infrastructure and Energy, on the importance of the post in creating infrastructure. We cover:

  • The importance of postal services in Africa, including access to financial services, government services, and e-commerce
  • The ubiquity of the post office network
  • Access to electricity and the internet, and the challenges of postal development
  • COVID's boost for digitalisation and e-commerce in Africa
  • The role posts can play in achieving AU Agenda 20643 and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development
  • African Continental Free Trade Area
  • Cybersecurity and trust, including data protection and child online safety
  • Achieving zero emissions - the opportunities and challenges present in African nations
  • Future of the postal sector in Africa, and conversations with national postal regulators
  • Representation and participation of women in the postal and logistics sectors
Ep 8: Humanitarian logistics and supply chain, featuring ICRC

Ep 8: Humanitarian logistics and supply chain, featuring ICRC

January 27, 2022

Sophie Gligorievic, Head of Logistics Division at the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), joins us to talk about humanitarian logistics and supply chain:

  • Are there differences between the humanitarian supply chain and the commercial supply chain?
  • Increased pressure on supply chain, including supply chain transparency and diversity
  • ERP and supply chain
  • Digital transformation and logistics
  • Cooperation with international and local organisations
  • How ICRC and humanitarian organisations leverage local postal networks to deliver aid
  • Partnerships during the pandemic
  • Integrating sustainability into the supply chain and the quest for decarbonisation
  • Posts collaborating with the ICRC
Ep 7: UPU Deputy Director General Pascal Clivaz

Ep 7: UPU Deputy Director General Pascal Clivaz

December 16, 2021

Outgoing UPU Deputy Director General Pascal Clivaz reflects on his time at the UPU and shares some pointers for the future of the postal sector:

  • Corporatisation of Swiss Post
  • Moving from Swiss Post's international bureau to the UPU
  • Reflections on the UPU's strengths
  • Opening up the UPU
  • How the UPU can add value to the postal sector
  • The UPU's role in arbitration
  • Index for Postal Development
    • The evolution of the index
    • How the index can help developing nations formulate their postal strategy
    • Adapting business models
    • Banking and financial services and logistics
  • How key stakeholders can build postal strategy
  • Advice for the next generation of postal leaders
  • The importance of multilateralism
  • A message for the new leadership team at the UPU


Ep 6: USPIS Chief Postal Inspector Gary Barksdale

Ep 6: USPIS Chief Postal Inspector Gary Barksdale

November 25, 2021

USPIS Chief Postal Inspector Gary Barksdale discusses the unique role of the US Postal Inspection Service and the contribution it makes to the postal world:

  • The US Postal Inspection Service's mandate
  • How the USPIS fits in with other US law enforcement agencies, such as the FBI and DEA, as well as international agencies such as Europol
  • How the USPIS's relationship with the US Postal Service makes it unique
  • The importance of postal security to the USPS, its customers, and the general public
  • The world's dependence on the postal network
  • Protecting postal people and facilities
  • USPIS's various functional groups
  • Major trends in postal-related crimes and threats, including employee safety, suspicious items in the mail, illegal substances in the mail, and mail fraud
  • Borderless crime and cyber security - and the digitalisation of postal services
  • The importance of educating the public about fraud
  • The UPU Postal Security Group's role and mission
  • How postal operators can advance their levels of security
  • How citizens can help maintain the security of the mail system

Visit the UPU website for more information on the Postal Security Group.

Ep 5: The digital future of the postal world

Ep 5: The digital future of the postal world

October 20, 2021
In this special edition of Voice Mail, we have three perspectives on digital transformation, data, and the postal world.
First, UPU Deputy Director General Pascal Clivaz joins us to discuss:
  • UPU and digital transformation
  • Global expectations in advance electronic data
  • Partnerships with IATA and WCO for cross-border
  • The growing importance of parcels to the global postal network
  • Increasing collaboration between the postal network and other elements of the parcels world
Then UPU Consultative Committee Chair Walter Trezek covers:
  • Major outcomes from recent UPU Congress
  • The importance of the UPU digital strategy
  • Cross-border parcel volumes in the postal network
  • What EAD/AED means for consumers, authorities, and postal operators
  • UPU's role in promoting green objectives
  • Opening up the UPU, its products, and its services
Finally, David Avsec from the UPU Postal Technology Centre explains aspects of Advance Electronic Data (EAD/AED):
  • Why EAD is important and what it is
  • Improving compliance
  • Capturing quality data


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