Trump Aide Warns of Going It Alone on International Postal Rates

The U.S. will set its own rates for the delivery of international packages, with or without the blessing of the Universal Postal Union, the White House’s trade adviser said.

“Our strong preference is to do it within the UPU. But, if not, then it will be done,” Peter Navarro, director of the White House Office of Trade and Manufacturing Policy, said Thursday in an interview with Bloomberg Government.

President Donald Trump announced on Oct. 17, 2018, that the U.S. was starting the one-year withdrawal process from the postal union, a 145-year-old United Nations organization that regulates global mail delivery. But if the UPU could overhaul its rules, the president said, the U.S. would rescind the notice and remain.

The president’s primary concern was the highly subsidized rate set by the UPU for delivery of lightweight packages sent from countries such as China, known as terminal dues. That rate, which is far less than the domestic delivery cost charged by the U.S. Postal Service, puts American businesses engaged in e-commerce — from small retailers to web giant Inc. — at a disadvantage.

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Go get ‘em President Trump!!