Royal Mail — Statement

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 3:40 pm on 16th December 2008.

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Photo of Lord Mandelson Lord Mandelson Secretary of State, Department for Business, Enterprise & Regulatory Reform, Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform 3:40 pm, 16th December 2008

My Lords, I am grateful to my noble friend. Resources have been made available to the Royal Mail for modernisation and to introduce much needed automation in its operation but, for whatever reason—I have rehearsed some of them—these resources and this investment have not been taken up in the way intended. As a result, Royal Mail is 40 per cent less efficient than its competitors. Of course we want to pay well and properly those who work in the Royal Mail, but it pays its staff 25 per cent more than its competitors. I accept that there is quite a lot of catching up to do, but the greater catching up has to be in the way of automation and efficiency rather than pay.