The Postal Corporation of Kenya (PCK) has secured US$650,000 (Sh.72 million) from TradeMark East Africa (TMEA), in a yearlong agreement that is aimed at improving the Corporation’s digital services, to enable it effectively support e-commerce in the East African region.
The Corporation, which is a primary handler and gatekeeper of parcels and small to medium- sized cargo for consignments crossing borders for both air and land freight, will benefit through enhanced internal digital capacities and improved collaboration with both regional and global actors, in the e-commerce space
Postmaster General and CEO of PCK, Dan Kagwe, said the partnership was a historical moment for the institution as TMEA becomes one of the partners that have shown confidence in PCK’s capacity, to enhance ecommerce in the region.
“It is a great beginning that will open doors for Posta, to work with diverse stakeholders and access the existing potential in the East African region,” said Mr. Kagwe.
He noted that the country and the region at large have over time experienced a rapid shift, from traditional mail, money order and stamp sales, to the growth of e-commerce and packages below 10 kgs that are relatable to SMEs.
TMEA Director Business Competitiveness, Ms Anataria Uwamariya, said that Posta is an ideal partner to enhance the logistical nature of their interventions, to enhance e-commerce ecosystems across the region, especially through its last mile delivery capabilities.
“It is our intention that this partnership, will enhance co-creation and engagement of diverse private and public sector stakeholders in the region,” said Ms Uwamariya.
The lucrative deal funded under the improved business competitiveness strategic objective of TMEA’s Export Capability programme, seeks to facilitate increased trade capacity of targeted businesses, through increased use of technology, to boost regional trade and linking businesses to international markets.
Against the backdrop of Covid-19 pandemic, PCK is keen to tap into the growth of small parcels and e-commerce items within the postal systems of Kenya, from an average 1,800 items every four days in 2018 to 2,300 per day in 2021.
As part of the partnership, the corporation intends to increase its capacity to process 10,000 packages daily, to provide an efficient logistics and distribution platform for E-commerce entrepreneurs and customers.
Even as Africa’s e-commerce sector becomes more vibrant, and the need for traders to participate in remote trading and use technology for business, has grown exponentially, making Posta keen to leverage on this dynamic space, through its partnership with TMEA.
TMEA plans to implement the Supporting E-commerce Ecosystem Development (SEED) programme, which will support interventions focused on boosting cross border e-commerce, through improved efficiency within the ecosystem, that Posta has been privileged to benefit from.
By Joseph Ng’ang’a