Sept. 26 (UPI) — The United Nations’ global postal union has rejected a U.S. proposal to allow member nations “self declare” shipping rates as a method of reimbursement, for a problem the Trump administration says is allowing some governments to avoid paying their share.
The administration says some carriers, like China’s, isn’t paying enough to have mail sent to the United States. During an emergency congress in Geneva Tuesday, the Universal Postal Union voted 78-57 against the administration’s proposal to allow member governments to set their own reimbursement rates beginning next year.
President Donald Trump has threatened to withdraw from the union if a solution isn’t found.
U.S. trade adviser Peter Navarro said the United States has tried to find a solution for a system “everyone knows is broken.”
Universal Postal Union Secretary General Bishar Hussein called on delegates to choose a path that benefits the entire union.
“I call on all of you, in the name of this historical union, to find the courage to choose the right path not just for yourselves, but for the entire industry,” Hussein said. “The United States of America has informed us that if the system is not reformed, they are going to quit the UPU.”
Hussein added that If the United States leaves the 192-member alliance, a “major disruption is on the way.”
“I believe we are at a fork in the road — a crossroads — where the choices we make can set the course for the rest of the century,” he said.
Navarro warned that the United States is preparing for a “seamless exit.”
There are two other U.S. proposals the union will consider this week, but Navarro said the defeated plan was the administration’s preferred option.
The UPU was founded in 1874 and coordinates global postal policies for its member nations.