The UPU adopted its first strategic plan at its Washington Congress in 1989. Since then, strategies were adopted at the Congresses held in Seoul (1994), Beijing (1999), Bucharest (2004) and Geneva* (2008).
In between Congresses, held every four years, the UPU official bodies focus on achieving the key goals of the strategy, aimed at strengthening the physical, electronic and financial dimensions of the global postal network.
The strategy's aim is to ensure the postal sector evolves to meet the communication needs of consumers and businesses worldwide and plays its role as an essential component of the global economy.
The strategy takes into account the viewpoints of postal stakeholders, who are widely consulted at the drafting stage. The strategy lays the foundation for modernizing and stimulating the development of postal services worldwide.
Also taken into account are the many challenges and phenomena the postal sector faces, including globalization, market liberalization, competition, electronic substitution, the advancement of new technologies, and regional and national inequalities.
Since 2005, the UPU has adopted a regional approach for implementing its strategy, relying on its 17 restricted unions throughout the world to play a leading role.
While contributing to the overall implementation of the strategy, the regions also decide on their own priorities. Some countries give first priority to quality of service, while others place postal reform or the development of financial services at the top of their agenda.
During regional round tables held to collect the views of all postal stakeholders on the future world postal strategy, the regional approach was emphasized as a key success factor.
The approach has borne fruit: some 60 postal reform projects are in progress, over 110 member countries participate in the continuous testing of service quality, and the number of countries participating in the electronic postal payments network has doubled in the last few years.
The next world postal strategy will be presented for adoption at the 25th Universal Postal Congress in Doha, Qatar, in 2012. It will become the Doha Postal Strategy.