A report from the cross-party Commons Business and Enterprise Committee has said that the post office network would be under renewed threat if the new Post Office Card Account (POCA) is not awarded to the Post Office later this summer.
The National Federation of Subpostmasters (NFSP) welcomed the report and claimed that up to 3,000 more branches on top of those affected by the current closures could be forced to shut if they lose the right to handle state pensions and benefits through the successor to the current POCA.
The committee's report on the future of the post office network also concluded that there should be a presumption against the closure of profitable offices. It also raised the threat to the network from proposals to split Post Office Ltd from the Royal Mail Group.
NFSP general secretary George Thomson said the report strengthened the Federation's warning that the government must act to protect branches left in the network. He said: "Failure to award POCA 2 would have a devastating effect on the viability of the network."
He added: "The government and Post Office Ltd must focus their efforts to deliver the investment and new products and services required to make sure that the new post office network is given the best possible chance to survive."