Russian Post Among World’s Worst – Study

The Russian Post is among the world’s worst postal services, outperformed even by counterparts in countries such as Angola, Honduras and Mongolia, a new study showed.

The study, titled Letter Grading Government Efficiency, saw its authors send two letters with wrong addresses and requests to “return to sender if undeliverable” to five biggest cities of 159 countries that have signed various international postal conventions, reported on Tuesday.

The authors, who included Andrei Shleifer, ranked the world’s most influential economist by RePEc database in 2007, allowed more than 400 days for the letters to return.

However, not a single letter came back from Russia and a number of other countries, including Egypt, Gabon, Myanmar, Somalia, Sudan and Tajikistan, said the study, available on

The United States, from which the letters were sent, predictably topped the list of the fastest and most reliable national postal services, followed by El Salvador and the Czech Republic.

Norway, Canada, Uruguay, Angola, Malawi, Mongolia, Fiji, Congo and Honduras also made the list of countries that returned at least some of the letters within 400-plus days, said the study, which was presented in St. Petersburg last week.

A postal service’s performance correlates with a country’s overall development, while usage of non-Latin alphabets further decreases the chances of receiving back a letter with a Latin address on the envelope, the study said.

Russian Post, a state-owned monopoly, increased its profit 65 percent to almost 800 million rubles ($24 million) in 2011.


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