The Malta Communications Authority is the National Regulatory Authority (NRA) for the postal sector in Malta.
The Authority regulatory remit includes ensuring the sustainable provision of a universal postal service, while providing all postal service users with the choice, quality and innovation offered by a liberalised market.
The Authority’s powers and functions are provided for by the Malta Communications Authority Act (Cap. 418 of the Laws of Malta) and the Postal Services Act (Cap. 254 of the Laws of Malta).
The MCA’s objectives in relation to the provision of postal services are:
- Safeguarding sustainable competition in the postal sector.
- Ensuring that postal undertakings provide a transparent, value for money service to users whilst adhering to incumbent social obligations
- Contributing to the development and implementation of postal regulatory policy.
Regulation of MaltaPost’s universal postal services
MaltaPost is designated as the sole universal postal service provider. The Postal Service Act sets out the description of the universal service that MaltaPost as the designated universal service provider (USP) is required to provide.
The MCA regulates the specification of the universal postal service to be provided; and the quality of these services by MaltaPost.
As the designated USP, the Postal Services Act sets out the basic requirements of the universal service which MaltaPost must provide to everyone and every organisation in Malta.
This involves at least one collection and one delivery on every working day of letters, packets and parcels up to 20kg in weight; the provision of a registered articles service, an insured articles service and postal services free of charge for blind and partially sighted persons as may be determined by the Authority. A basic counter service must be provide throughout Malta. The universal postal service covers both inland and cross-border services.
Regulation of MaltaPost’s price of universal postal services
Tariffs for universal postal services must comply with the following requirements:
- Prices must be affordable so that all postal users may avail of the services provided
- Prices must be cost-oriented by taking account of, and reflect the cost of, providing the postal service or part of the postal service concerned
- Prices must comply with the uniform tariff requirement
- Tariffs must be transparent and non-discriminatory
The Authority regulates the prices of the universal postal service on an ex ante basis - i.e. in order for the USP (MaltaPost) to increase prices MaltaPost requires advance approval from the MCA.
MaltaPost is currently classified as having significant market power (SMP) in the following markets:
- domestic single piece letter mail market
- outbound single piece letter mail market
- domestic registered letter mail market
- outbound registered letter mail market
- domestic bulk letter mail market
- outbound bulk letter mail market
- outbound parcel post market
MaltaPost is thereby liable to the continued application of tariff approval, among others, for the above markets within the scope of the universal service. MaltaPost’s activity does not satisfy the criteria required for SMP status in the domestic parcel mail market.
Regulation of MaltaPost’s quality for universal postal services
The Authority has set performance standards of
- 95% for next working day delivery (D+1) and
- 99% delivery within three days of posting (D+3)
For ordinary mail (single-piece) and domestic bulk mail in Malta where the postal article is posted before the latest time of posting as publicised at the access point. Further details can be found in MCA Decision Notice MCA/D/16-2703.
MaltaPost’s Annual Domestic Quality of Service Standards and Performance for next working day (D+1) and for delivery within three working days (D+3) for both domestic and cross-border mail are published by MaltaPost.
Information on the number of complaints received by MaltaPost are also published by MaltaPost.
Postal Research and Data
The Authority publishes research and data on the Postal Sector in Malta.
All postal research can be found in the publications section and the following are the most recent publications:
- 2019 - Bulk Mail Perception Survey
- 2018 - Consumer Perception Survey
- 2019 - Business Postal Perception Survey
Main trends and development in Malta of the postal sector can be found in the publication section:
Consultations and Decisions
Look through the Authority’s public consultations and decisions on matters relating to the postal sector.
Complain about postal services
Any postal operator providing postal services must have a complaints procedure published on its website.
Information on what steps to be taken when lodging a complaint with a postal operator can be found in the FAQs available on the End-User page.
The Authority may be able to help you if you still remain unsatisfied with the response and/or solution offered by your postal operator, after having gone through your postal operator’s complaint handling procedures. We can then provide you with all the relevant information on the matter, so that you will have a better understanding of what the postal operators obligations are, what your rights are and the possible courses of action available to you.
Information on how to lodge a complaint with the Authority can be found in the FAQs available on the End-User page.
European Regulators Group for Postal Service
The MCA participates in the European Regulators Group for Postal Services (ERGP).
The ERGP was established in August 2010. The functions of the ERGP include advising and assisting the European Commission in consolidation of the internal market for postal services and in consistent application of the applicable regulatory framework in all the EU member states.
Every three years the ERGP publishes a Medium Term Strategy. The ERGP also publishes its Work Programme annually. The Work Programme is implemented by ERGP working groups composed of experts from NRAs, members or observers. The working groups address specific topics, analyse the relevant issues and prepare, amongst others, reports for discussion and adoption by the ERGP.
The 2019 ERGP Work Programme includes deliverables in each of the following areas which a WGs in each is responsible for:
- Review of the regulatory framework for postal services
- Implementation of the tariff regulation principles in Member States
- Cross border parcels delivery
- Access to the postal network
- Quality of service, consumer protection and complaints handling
- Monitoring of the main market developments
Latest news, meetings, documents and public consultations are available via the ERGP website.