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Price of a stamp will rise to 60c next month

An Post has been given permission to consolidate its postage rates – so both 55c and 65c stamps will be repriced at 60c.

Image: Sam Boal/Photocall Ireland

THE PRICE of sending a letter is to increase next month.

The communications regulator ComReg has given An Post permission to raise the price of its everyday stamps, with effect from April 2.

Letters which weigh under 50 grams, which currently cost 55 cent to post, will be repriced to 60 cent each.

Letters or postcards to Great Britain and the rest of Europe, which cost 82 cent, will jump to 90 cent under the same measures.

However, the reforms will see some consolidation of postal rates: letters which weigh between 51 and 100 grams will now fall into the same postal structure, meaning that letters which currently cost 65 cent to send will also cost 60 cent – a reduction of 8.3 per cent.

Data submitted by An Post to ComReg outlined that the changes would result in about €11 million in extra revenue over the first full year of its introduction.

An Post’s annual accounts for 2011 showed a pre-tax profit of just €347,000, but an actuarial loss of over €121 million on pensions and other obligations.

ComReg’s approval for the deal came on the provision that the price hikes “can only be one of a series of measures necessary to ensure the continued financial viability of An Post and maintain the provision of a universal postal service”.

ComReg head Kevin O’Brien told An Post’s CEO Donal Connell: “These various measures must include cost containment and growth in other commercial activities.

“It is for An Post to address its financial challenges by identifying and taking these other necessary measures as a matter of urgency, in order ot ensure the continued provision of the universal postal service at an affordable price for all postal service users in the state.”

An Post had originally sought an increase in the everyday postage rate to 65 cent, but revised its request in January.

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Gavan Reilly

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