Eircode was designed to exclude An Post competitors, claim opponents

A group representing freight and courier firms has claimed a design report for Eircode shows the national postcode project has been structured to meet the requirements of An Post, "to the exclusion of its competitors".

Eircode was designed to exclude An Post competitors, claim opponents

The Freight Transport Association of Ireland represents delivery and logistics companies — all of which have declared that they will not use Eircode due to its design.

Eircode’s design will see every address in the country given a seven character postcode.

The association claims a document it has obtained outlines how An Post “effectively structured both parts of the postcode” and that “spurious, inaccurate, bogus, unsupported and in some cases, simply fabricated reasoning” was used to reject the use of hierarchical codes — such as that currently in use in the UK. This, proponents say, will make it easier to give directions to locations by reading the code by sight.

In a strongly worded letter to the Joint Committee on Transport and Communications, the association claims a “fundamental objective of this report was to prevent the adoption of a hierarchical code” and that “it is difficult to take a benign view of this level of inaccuracy.”

The document, entitled the National Postcode System Design Report v4.0, is dated May 2014 and was prepared by Capita Ireland, the consortium awarded the State licence to develop and operate the postcode system.

The FTAI had requested a copy of the report from the Department of Communications, but the department has yet to issue the group with a copy. The FTAI however, obtained the report, and forwarded it and a copy of its analysis of the 74-page document to members of the JCTC.

“FTA Ireland has asked the members of the JCTC to study the document, our analysis of it, and the evidence they have already heard, before responding to Minister White on the matter. In the meantime, FTA Ireland and its members are taking legal advice on the most appropriate steps they should take next,” Neil McDonnell, general manager of the association, said.

Liam Duggan of Capita Ireland said he could not comment on the entirety of FTAI’s correspondence with the JCTC as he had yet to see it, but rejected the claim that “spurious, inaccurate, bogus, unsupported and in some cases simply fabricated reasoning” was used to reject the use of hierarchical codes. Mr Duggan said Eircode’s design was developed over a long period of time following stakeholder consultation and a competitive dialogue procedure.

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