This week’s bulletin contains the latest information about Australia, Bhutan, Cyprus, France, Honduras, Samoa, USA.
Start date: 30 September
Australia Post would like to advise of additional screening measures on inbound mail into Australia for new biosecurity risks, see attached notice.
The products listed below are now banned from the mail into Australia, including rice, beans, etc., with some exclusions also listed below.
If you send those products to Australia in the mail, the items will be stopped and may be destroyed.
Australia Post will not provide compensation for items that get destroyed due to containing banned products.
In case of non-compliance, they expect slow down on inbound processing for your mail due to increased inspection and scrutiny.
Please refer to the official website for more details and a full list of banned products.
- Rice (Oryza sativa)
- Chickpeas (Cicer arietinum)
- Cucurbit seed (Cucurbita, Cucumis, Citrullus spp.)
- Cumin seed (Cuminum cyminum)
- Safflower seed (Carthamus tinctorius)
- Bean seed (Phaseolus spp.)
- Soybean (Glycine max)
- Mung beans, cowpeas (Vigna spp.)
- Lentils (Lens culinaris)
- Wheat (Triticum aestivum)
- Coriander seed (Coriandrum sativum)
- Celery seed (Apium graveolens)
- Peanuts (Arachis hypogaea)
- Dried chillies/capsicum (Capsicum spp.)
- Faba bean (Vicia faba)
- Pigeon Pea (Cajanus cajan)
- Pea seed (Pisum sativum)
- Fennel seed (Foeniculum spp).
The following exclusions apply:
- goods that are thermally processed that are commercially manufactured and packaged such as retorted, blanched, roasted, fried, par-boiled, boiled, puffed, malted or pasteurised goods
- goods that are chemically processed and preserved such as with a Formalin Propionic Acid fixative, Formalin Acetic acid alcohol, Carnoy’s fixative or ethanol.
- fresh vegetables
- commercially manufactured frozen or freeze-dried food (perishable foodstuffs only)
- frozen plant samples for plant research (including through the use of liquid nitrogen and freeze drying)
- oils derived from vegetables or seed
- Preserved or pickled (such as in vinegar or alcohol)
goods that have been refined or extracted to obtain specific components from plant-based raw materials. Examples include starch, lecithin, protein, cellulose, sugars and pigments.
Bhutan Post informs that the lockdown has been lifted, as of 26 September 2020, in the areas that were considered to present a high risk with regard to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Therefore, normal service has resumed and Bhutan Post is now able to receive, dispatch and deliver domestic and international mail throughout the country.
A weekly flight is available for the exchange of inbound and outbound international airmail (letter-post, parcel-post and EMS items) with Bhutan via Bangkok.
Cyprus Post informs that a number of air carriers are once again operating flights to Cyprus. Therefore, it is now possible to send dispatches of all mail classes (letter-post, parcel-post and EMS items) to Cyprus.
However the social distancing and other measures to combat the COVID-19 virus remain in place. As a result, the delivery of postal items may still be subject to delays.
The designated operator of France, La Poste, informs of developments with regard to the COVID-19 situation after 30 September 2020.
In metropolitan France, the virus is continuing to circulate, and the situation is growing worse.
On 26 September, the French Government issued a new map classifying the country’s territories according to four different alert levels.
The alert levels for the 101 French departments are currently as follows:
- Alert zone: 71 departments are in the red zone;
- Heightened alert zone: All the biggest population centres are affected, namely: Paris (75), Hauts-de-Seine (92), Seine-Saint-Denis (93), Val de Marne (95), Lyon (69), Lille (59), Montpellier (34), Bordeaux (33), Grenoble (38), Rennes (35), Rouen (76), Saint-Etienne (42), Toulouse (31) and Nice (06).
- Maximum alert zone: Guadeloupe (971) and Aix-Marseille (13).
- Public health emergency: no longer in force in any areas.
While ensuring the continuity of all the services offered to customers and of its various activities, La Poste pays great heed to the current health situation and adapts its operations as appropriate to protect the health of postal workers, particularly those in the most vulnerable groups.
So, in line with general health protection and workplace safety principles, and the health measures put in place by public-facing businesses and institutions, La Poste is still required to ensure compliance with social distancing and hygiene measures both among its staff (management of flows of people) and between staff and customers:
- by implementing collective protection measures;
- by adapting the opening hours and operations of its processing and distribution centres, and its post offices;
- by avoiding the risk of hand-borne contamination;
- by implementing measures to protect staff, in line with the applicable protocol drawn up by the Ministry of Labour.
Nevertheless, La Poste wishes to report some significant improvements in the situation as follows:
- The public health emergency status has been withdrawn from Mayotte and French Guiana;
- La Poste is working towards restoring deliveries six days a week.
However, the continuing application of various transitional measures prevents La Poste from guaranteeing delivery standards and times, and delays in the processing and delivery of mail are to be expected throughout the country.
In addition, despite increased international transport capacity and more frequent direct flights, La Poste is still not in a position to accept letter-post, parcel-post and EMS items in closed transit dispatches, either for foreign countries or for French overseas territories.
Accordingly, the restrictions set out in previous Incident Bulletins regarding service standards will continue to apply, and the force majeure situation will remain in force until further notice.
The entire territory of Honduras (Rep.) will remain in lockdown until 4 October 2020 (or a later date to be communicated in due course), the designated operator of Honduras (Rep.), Empresa de Correos de Honduras (Honducor) now wishes to inform that it has decided to gradually resume its activities and, in particular, the sorting, distribution and delivery of incoming mail. It therefore now invites other operators that are able to do so to accept and forward mail items for Honduras
However, in line with public health measures, Honducor is currently operating with 33% of employees on site, which will have a have a significant impact on the quality of sorting, distribution and delivery of inbound items, as well as on the timely provision of EDI updates and processing of inquiries and international accounts.
The Government of Samoa has extended the state of emergency until 26 October 2020.
With regard to international transport, there is still only one cargo flight per week to and from New Zealand. As a result, Samoa Post can send outbound mail and receive inbound mail only once per week. For mail to the United States, it is only able to send EMS items; normal parcel and letter post remain suspended. Furthermore, all inbound mail is subject to a seven-day quarantine before being processed and delivered. Owing to these conditions, Samoa Post wishes to advise all partners and Union member countries that delays are to be expected.
Please be advised that Western US states are battling nearly 100 wildfires with more than half a million people being forced to evacuate their homes.
Wildfires are burning across 12 western US states, with California, Washington state and Oregon being the most impacted by the blazes, fuelled by heat waves and windy conditions.
As a result, please expect delivery delays in USA.