The Government could achieve savings of close to €80m by outsourcing their payments and transactions to the post office network, the consultancy firm Grant Thornton has claimed.
If motor tax was payable at post offices it could generate savings of €60.6m according to the Grant Thornton review conducted for the Irish Postmaster’s Union.
Not only could outsourcing more services to the network save the Government money, it could also help preserve many local post offices that are threatened with closure.
“This detailed research proves beyond doubt that the Government would not only achieve vital savings for the exchequer but would bring additional revenues to post offices who could continue to be sustainable businesses within the local community,” IPU general secretary Brian McGann said.
Other savings that could be achieved by moving various transactions to the post office included €8.5m from hospital charges such as accident and emergency& costs.
Making the household charge payable through the network would generate savings of €8.1m and another €7.7m could be saved if additional banking transactions were conducted through the post office, according to the review.
Despite the amount of money that could be generated from the move, it would not be equal in value to the biggest contract that post offices hold — the payment of social welfare.
Grant Thornton also looked at the role of the post office in rural communities. St Vincent de Paul, Irish Rural Link and Age Action Ireland have warned the loss of the post office could increase financial exclusion and exacerbate socio-economic inequalities.
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