Government must do more to help local Post Offices, says a new report by the Business and Enterprise Select Committee. 

Post Offices – Securing Their Future
, an investigation of the Post Office network and the role it plays in communities, found that central government and local authorities were not offering enough services through the network, limiting its efficiency and that of the stores that support them.

The Committee, chaired by labour MP Peter Luff,  identifies services it says the post office network could and should offer, dividing them into five categories: mail services, financial services, local government services, central government services and broader community services. It offers specific ideas for new services in these five areas.

Luff said: "Given sufficient political will from both central and local government and a real determination to sustain and develop a priceless national asset, there is no reason why the network cannot flourish again, serving the whole nation in a uniquely valuable way."
 
Association of Convenience Stores chief executive James Lowman welcomed the findings of the report and echoed the recommendation for the government to help these stores.
 
“Services – whether through the Post Office or another provider – are a crucial part of the convenience store offer,” he said. “Our members want to be at the heart of a network of services in communities and need the fair and balanced relationships with suppliers to do this.
 
“If our members are to survive and prosper, they need fair contracts which allow them the freedom to offer the services that customers want,” he added.

See the full report at 
http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm200809/cmselect/cmberr/371/37102.htm

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