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Russian Post Plans Branches Abroad to Speed Up Deliveries

A postal worker sorting letters in one of Russian Post's processing centers Andrei Makhonin

Russia's mail service wants to improve its efficiency and earnings by opening post offices overseas to streamline shipments of online orders and holiday gifts to Russia, according to an interview with Russian Post chief Dmitry Strashnov published Friday.

Strashnov said foreign couriers typically shipped many of the parcels addressed to far-flung Russian regions, such as Siberia, to Moscow first, forcing the Russian postal service to carry the packages across the country at its own expense.

"It's very important that a package addressed to a customer in Siberia doesn't go there through Moscow," Strashnov told Rossiiskaya Gazeta. "This affects both the time and the cost of delivery."

The Russian Post plans to open offices in Southeast Asia, Europe and the U.S. — the most frequent senders of online orders and gifts to Russians — to sort the parcels and channel them directly to the Russian region for which they are intended. Currently, the Russian Post has a sole foreign office in Berlin, and it's "not a good one," Strashnov said.

The Russian Post expects a 30 percent to 40 percent increase in international shipments ahead of the New Year's holidays, he added.

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