Australia Post wants 10c stamp price rise

The cost of stamps is set to rise by 10c to $1.10 in a bid to keep Australia's post offices open.
The cost of stamps is set to rise by 10c to $1.10 in a bid to keep Australia's post offices open.

The price of stamps could soon rise to $1.10 in an effort to keep Australia's post offices open.

Australia Post has written to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission seeking an increase of the basic postage rate by 10c a stamp from January 2020.

"Last year our letters business lost $190 million - this is after the benefit of significant efficiency savings," Australia Post chief executive Christine Holgate said in a statement on Wednesday.

"It is important that we responsibly address pricing if we are to protect this important service and keep our network of community post offices open."

If the increase is approved, it would be the first one in four years, when stamps rose to $1 in 2016.

The average household which sends letters would pay an extra $1.50 a year under the new pricing, Australia Post projects.

The 60c price of concession stamps would remain in place for pensioners and veterans and the 65c festive period postage will also stay the same.

The service said business and government customers, who send about 97 per cent of Australia's mail, will continue to get incentives to encourage them to use the post and charities will also continue to receive significant discounts.

By increasing the price, Australia Post said it will be able to continue keeping regional and remote post offices open and maintain letter delivery five days a week.

"Our posties deliver to more than 12.1 million addresses across the country," Ms Holgate said.

"It doesn't matter if they have one letter or 100 for the address, they still need to drive past the letterbox each day."

The national representative body for the owners of licensed post offices said the $1.10 price tag is "good value for money" given the distance Australia Post covers.

"No other carrier delivers the length and breadth of Australia - and certainly not for such a low price," Post Office Agents Association Limited director Bob Chizzoniti said in a statement.

"It is important that Australia Post's letters service is sustainable."

Australian Associated Press