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Caribbean Postal Union looks to regional approach to diverted mail

Grenada is not alone as it waits for mail originating from Canada. Several other Caribbean countries are awaiting mail that was diverted due to the transportation challenges brought on by closed borders as a consequence of the global pandemic.

“Not everyone is in the same predicament,” Caribbean Postal Union (CPU) Technical Director Loretta Charlemagne told The Grenadian Voice on Wednesday.

“We’re looking at the best approach for the entire region,” Charlemagne said, adding she expects the CBU to have the issues of diverted mail and the best transportation routes settled by the end of October.

Most of the mail from Canada destined for Grenada that was diverted to England after Grenada closed its borders in March has yet to be delivered. When The Grenadian Voice spoke with Director of Post Isaac Bhagwan in July, he described the situation as a “tail spin” and said the Grenada Postal Corporation (GPC) was trying to get the route changed and have the mail diverted to the US.

On July 14, the GPC received nine bags (204 pounds) of the diverted mail via sea freight from British Post, the first mail originating in Canada to arrive in Grenada since the borders were closed. On July 22, the GPC received eight bags (192 pounds) from British Post. These weekly shipments were expected to continue going forward, but this has not happened.

The Grenadian Voice has learned that Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Guyana, Trinidad and Tobago and Saint Lucia are among the Caribbean countries awaiting diverted mail from Canada.

With the backlog of mail continuing to build up in the region and the traditional pre-Christmas mailing season approaching, the CPU is “doing everything possible to ensure people are in receipt of their mail by the end of October.”

Since the border closed, some mail was fed on to cargo airlines as passenger airlines were not operating. With the commencement of Air Canada service on August 10, the GPC had expected more deliveries from Canada; however this has yet to materialize, Bhagwan said on Thursday.

“Also, Barbados has advised us that it is not accepting second and third party mail. That poses another challenge as Barbados is one of the main transshipment points in the region,” he added.

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