Postal operator Whistl has launched a scathing attack on Royal Mail – setting out a ten-point plan in its submission to Ofcom’s review of its main rival’s regulation – in a bid to eradicate what it claims are uncompetitive practices.
With the submission period for the so-called “Ofcom Discussion Document” now passed, Whistl has published its own recommendations in a statement headed “Royal Mail remain unpunished, unrepentant and unrestrained”.
Among its proposals are calls for stability in the market with a term of at least five years and a limitation on Royal Mail’s ability to make unilateral contract changes.
It also wants mandated access to a wide range of services. This, Whistl insists, is because competition would benefit consumers of postal services by creating choice, driving efficiency, and promoting innovation.
Meanwhile, it is demanding a reduction in transactional mail prices to match those set for direct mail and to develop a better way for requesting new services from Royal Mail which is much more even-handed, effective, speedy and transparent.
Finally, Whistl also wants Ofcom to set an appropriate Access Price Cap to protect Access customers from what it calls “any exploitative pricing going forward” which flows through to the retail prices.
Whistl chief executive Nick Wells (pictured) said: “Whistl is happy that Royal Mail is able to make a reasonable rate of return on the mail it provides, and would like to provide even more, if given opportunities to do so, however this review sees Royal Mail remain unpunished, unrepentant and unrestrained for its anti-competitive activities.
“Greater and more constructive collaboration with the mail market is the way forward. Ofcom should encourage better ways of working so that Access operators and their customers have an ability promote jointly the use of mail, to feed into the change process and help Royal Mail tackle the inefficiencies that exist in its business.”
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