Swiss Post`s new banking framework agreement with 28 UK banks will make it more profitable for retailers to open an in-store post office, according to the director of banking services. For people living in disadvantaged rural or urban areas, post offices are a vital artery that ensures the financial inclusion of vulnerable customers by offering under one roof essential services such as cash withdrawals, bill payments and postal services. Given that more than half of people (52%) have only visited cash traffickers in the past year, it is essential to facilitate access to cash for both retailers and consumers*. In 2017, Swiss Post and the major UK High Street banks entered into a sector agreement that allows anyone with a UK bank account to carry out a wide range of banking transactions at post offices to ensure that individuals and businesses in municipalities across Britain have comfortable local banking institutions, even though the last bank branch was closed. “We have worked with banks to ensure that we can continue to offer their customers an economically viable service and, most importantly, to ensure that postal workers receive fair remuneration for the provision of these services. This could mean more good news for Postmaster as part of the ongoing compensation audit, and we will report on the result later this year. Our branches offer an excellent and vital service for customers who carry out their daily banking operations, both individuals and businesses. “It was very possible that the banks would say they didn`t want to pay us anymore, so we`re excited about the deal.” The deal means that millions of postal customers will retain free access to banking services at 11,500 branches, all located within three miles of 99.7 percent of the population. Postal Affairs Minister Kelly Tolhurst said: “Post offices provide an important public service to local communities across the country, including banking. I am pleased that the banks have signed this new agreement which allows the post office to continue to positively influence people`s lives and support SMEs, and to ensure that postal workers` salaries are fair and reflect the essential services they provide. The number of customers accessing banking services through postal agencies is expected to continue to increase, as cooperation with UK banks and the government will continue to raise awareness among customers who need services to the customer subsidiary.
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