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Latvian Postal service to close most offices

The Latvian Postal Service (Latvijas Pasts, LP) plans to close 105 post offices nationwide by the end of the year due to unprofitability. 12 of them will cease to exist altogether, and 93 will in future only provide services on demand, TV Kurzeme reports.

As a result of this, the territorially largest municipality in Latvia – Dienvidkurzeme municipality – will have no post offices at all.

Already last year, the closure of the post offices of Lieģi and Rucava caused great dissatisfaction among residents of the Dienvidkurzeme municipality. But this year the rest of the post offices in the municipality will cease their activities, because they are unprofitable. The Cīrava Post Office will open its doors for the last time in person this Thursday.

“Terrible! What can we do now, the old people? It will be hard,“ said Cīrava resident Lilija.

Biruta said she lives 5 kilometres from the center, “in the woods, I have very big problems, I need some sort of letters or whatever, for example, I won't have anyone now delivering them.”

Dissatisfaction with such a change in company policy was also expressed by residents of other parishes, who already have to travel 20-25 kilometers to the nearest post office, but this distance will at least double in the future.

To preserve postal services in the current format, the Dienvidkurzeme Municipality Council offered to the Latvian Post to take over the functions of post office employees.

“Every former parish has our employee who could be trained. We offered it could help the post office. Because the post is a national measure, and we are part of the country. But the [Postal] board says it is good that we are ready, but they are not ready to give up these services to us,” said Aivars Priedols (Union of Greens and farmers), chairman of Dienvidkurzeme Municipality Council.

The Latvian Post does not intend to change its plans, and it will not only affect South Kurzeme. Only 71 post offices will remain in Latvia at the end of the year.

“This year we started the year with 176 offices, and in total, our plan will affect 105 divisions, 12 of which will be physically closed, while 93 will be changed in format,” said Mārtiņš Liepiņš, head of post offices and delivery division of the State JSC “Latvijas pasts”.

Where the format is changed, residents will be able to receive postal services by applying it in advance via a customer support phone, and the postal service employee will go to them the next working day.

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