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Wednesday, 3 December 2003
Page: 23750

Ms Corcoran asked the Minister for Communications, Information Technology and the Arts, upon notice, on 17 September 2003:

(1) Will the Minister explain the process and provide the criteria that were used to determine that a Postpoint self-service unit located within the newsagency at Aspendale Gardens Shopping Centre in the electoral division of Isaacs is the preferred option for residents instead of a Post Office.

(2) Has a recent survey been done to establish where the residents of Aspendale Gardens currently conduct their bill paying and postal service transaction; if so, when was the survey undertaken and what were the results.

Mr Williams (Minister for Communications, Information Technology and the Arts) —The answer to the honourable member's question, based on advice received from Australia Post, is as follows:

(1) Australia Post takes a number of factors into account in determining whether additional postal outlets are justified, including the location and viability of existing outlets and the volume of business likely to be transacted.

Before establishing a new outlet, Australia Post needs to be satisfied that it will generate sufficient new business in its own right and not simply draw customers away from other outlets, thereby reducing their long-term financial viability.

In developing areas like Aspendale Gardens it is common practice to install a Postpoint facility (ie a stand-alone merchandising unit which provides access to stamps and other basic postal products) in order to gauge community demand at a particular location.

Australia Post installed a Postpoint facility in the Aspendale Gardens Shopping Centre several years ago. However, based on the current low level of demand for the products available from the Postpoint facility, Australia Post is not satisfied that a separate postal outlet at Aspendale Gardens can be justified at this stage.

(2) Australia Post has advised that no such survey has been undertaken.