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Nationwide locker network by end-2022; parcel collection points within 250m of all HDB homes

SINGAPORE — From late this year, the Info-communications Media Development Authority (IMDA) will progressively roll out a nationwide network of 1,000 parcel locker stations in public locations such as public housing estates, MRT stations and community clubs. These will be within 250m of every Housing and Development Board (HDB) flat.

The aim is that by end-2022, residents will have at least one parcel locker station within five minutes' walk from home or 250m from their public housing blocks.

The aim is that by end-2022, residents will have at least one parcel locker station within five minutes' walk from home or 250m from their public housing blocks.

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SINGAPORE — From late this year, the Info-communications Media Development Authority (IMDA) will progressively roll out a nationwide network of 1,000 parcel locker stations in public locations such as public housing estates, MRT stations and community clubs. These will be within 250m of every Housing and Development Board (HDB) flat.

The lockers are meant to make it more efficient for couriers to deliver parcels, so that they no longer have to go door to door. It will also be available to all e-commerce and logistics service providers.

The nationwide initiative was announced on Tuesday (March 3) in Parliament during the debate on the budget of the Ministry of Communications and Information (MCI).

Speaking during the debate, Communications and Information Minister S Iswaran noted that the growth of e-commerce has driven a rapid rise in parcel deliveries worldwide.

He added that in Singapore, about 200,000 parcels are delivered daily, and e-commerce is projected to grow at 12 to 20 per cent annually over the next five years.

“It is neither productive, nor sustainable, for this growing volume of packages to all be delivered to the doorstep,” Mr Iswaran said. “We do need alternative solutions. We must enhance Singapore’s last mile delivery infrastructure.”

One such solution, he said, is the nationwide parcel locker station network, an expansion of a pilot that was launched in Bukit Panjang and Punggol’s HDB towns in 2018. Under the pilot programme, there are 23 locker sites in Bukit Panjang and 39 in Punggol run by national postal agency Singapore Post (SingPost) and locker service operator BluPort.

When the nationwide initiative kicks in, the sites will be run by IMDA instead.

Nevertheless, the authority will partner SingPost to leverage the postal agency’s “extensive postal service experience”. It will also work with industry partners such as online shopping firm Shopee to co-develop solutions to meet the growing demand of e-commerce.

IMDA said the pilot showed a four-fold increase in delivery efficiency. Delivery drivers were able to despatch 250 parcels a day, compared with about 60 parcels if they were to do it door-to-door.

Three quarters of the locker users surveyed showed that they were satisfied with the service, based on a National University of Singapore (NUS) study done in September last year, IMDA said.

“Building on the pilot’s achievements, IMDA will scale up the network of parcel lockers and deploy them nationwide to better serve the needs of Singapore residents,” it added. 

Assistant Professor He Long, who is from the department of analytics and operations at the NUS Business School, said the locker system manages to boost delivery productivity by reducing the time taken by couriers to travel all the way to the doorstep of customers.

The lockers have also helped to optimise delivery routes used by the couriers, he added.

Separately, Ms Sim Ann, Senior Minister of State for Communications and Information, said during the debate on MCI’s budget that SingPost is improving its service standards to “rebuild public trust”. 

"They have extended delivery hours for peak periods, improved staff remuneration and hired more postmen," she said.

This, after the company had a number of service lapses in 2018 and early last year, she said. 

SingPost was fined S$300,000 for for not meeting quality service standards in the delivery of letters in 2018, after being fined S$100,000 for similar lapses the year before.

Ms Sim noted that consumer complaints fall by about 40 per cent in December last year compared with 2018, and customer satisfaction has also grown. 

She added that MCI and IMDA will continue to work closely with SingPost to enhance its service standards. 

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IMDA HDB locker parcel delivery

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