Proposals by the European Commissionto open postal markets to unrestrictedcompetition, will force E.U.nations to withdraw state support fornational postal services, the Wall StreetJournal reported.
.Proposals put forward by the commissionwould have forced France tounwind its unlimited guarantee for allliabilities held by La Poste, which makesthe company a low-risk borrower.
The country’s 17,000 post officeswould also have had to share the marketwith global mail carriers like TNTand Deutsche Post AG (DPW.XE), aswell as express carriers like UPS andFedEx Corp.
France was one of the fiercest criticsof the reforms, arguing the moveswould crush La Poste and threatenservices in small towns. Competitorswould cherry pick the most profitablebusinesses, such as city deliveries, andneglect rural regions, it said. The commission’scurrent proposal calls forprying open the E.U. postal marketby 2009. While the E.U. heads of stateand government have given generalbacking to the commission’s plan, theyshied away from endorsing the 2009timeframe and kept open a wide windowfor France to keep protecting La Poste’s monopoly.