The MCA publishes a decision on Postcodes as an Integral Part of a Postal Address

Even though postcodes have been implemented in Malta since 1991, in the majority of cases they are not being included in the address of postal articles. Recent studies show that postcode usage is still very low, with only 28% of bulk mail and 39% of single piece mail having such postcodes.

In October 2016 the Malta Communications Authority (MCA), on behalf of the Government of Malta, published a consultation document proposing to amend regulation 15 of the ‘Postal Services (General) Regulations’ (S.L. 254.01 of the Laws of Malta) to require addressed postal articles to include a postcode.

The consultation highlighted the need for postcodes to form an integral part of a postal address. This is due to the fact that when a post code is included in a postal address, postal sorting and delivery operations would be greatly facilitated, thereby increasing efficiency of the postal operator and reducing potential of mis-deliveries and other errors from taking place in the process. Furthermore, postcodes can be used to greatly improve the geolocation and validation of a person’s address.

Following the publication of the Legal Notice amending the above-mentioned Postal Services Regulations, the Decision Notice issued by the MCA today establishes the regulatory conditions which are to be met by MaltaPost as the Universal Service Provider before the amended regulations become applicable. Amongst other conditions, MaltaPost is obliged to undertake an extensive information programme to inform the general public, and which will include individual notification of the postcode to each address in Malta and Gozo. These conditions are included in Section 3.2 of the MCA Decision.

The MCA will issue a public notice when it is satisfied that MaltaPost is implementing the information programme. At least a six-month timeframe would be applicable from the publication of the Decision to the coming into force of the updated Regulations. It is important to note that postal articles not bearing a postcode would still be received, however inclusion of the postcode renders their delivery more efficient.

The MCA is committed to continue monitoring the implementation of this Decision and reserves the right to specify any other conditions it may consider reasonable and necessary in the future.