IMDA is responsible for the administration of the Postal Services Act, which governs postal services in Singapore.

Under this role, IMDA has the power to grant, modify and suspend licences, and to give directions, issue codes of practice and standards of performance for the sector.

Postal services in Singapore are mainly governed by the Postal Services Act (Cap 237A) (the "Act"), the Postal Services Regulations (Cap 237A, Rg 1) (the "Regulations"), the Postal Services (Class Licence) Regulations 2005, and the Postal Services (Control of Designated Postal Licensees) Regulations 2012.

IMDA was appointed by the Government to be the Postal Authority responsible for the administration of the Act, with the power to grant, modify and suspend licences, and to give directions, issue codes of practice and standards of performance.

Delivery of Letters

Singapore Post Ltd (SingPost) was granted a 25-year Public Postal Licence on 1 April 1992, with a 15-year exclusive right to convey by post between places in Singapore, and between places in Singapore and places outside Singapore, whether by land, by sea or by air, all letters and postcards, and to perform all the incidental services of receiving, collecting, sending, despatching and delivering of all letters and postcards i.e. basic mail services.

On 5 February 2007, Dr Lee Boon Yang, the Minister for Information, Communications and the Arts, announced the Government's decision to end SingPost's monopoly in the basic mail services market on 31 March 2007 and to liberalise the market on 1 April 2007. Industry players interested in providing domestic and international basic mail services in Singapore shall first obtain a licence from IMDA. For further details on the application procedures, please refer to Licensing Guidelines and Licence Template.

The basic mail services cover the conveyance of letters weighing 500g and below. Letters as defined in the revised Act excludes books, catalogues, newspapers, and periodicals. The conveyance of direct mail will also be exempted from licensing.

IMDA will continue to designate SingPost as a Public Postal Licensee and SingPost will be required to perform a set of Universal Service Obligations determined by IMDA, including:

  • provide services for the conveyance and delivery of letters to any person in Singapore who requests for such services; and
  • provide and maintain posting boxes and post offices throughout Singapore;

To protect consumers' interests and to preserve mail integrity and security, IMDA will continue to grant SingPost the following:

  • access to letterbox masterdoor keys;
  • the right to issue national stamps; and
  • the right to maintain the national postal code system.

For more details, please refer to IMDA's decision and explanatory memorandum on the framework for further liberalisation of the postal services sector in Singapore.

IMDA will seek to promote and maintain a robust competition framework to protect consumers' interests, and ensure fair play and certainty for all industry players. Following the postal market liberalisation decision, IMDA will be conducting public consultations to solicit more feedback on details of the proposed regulatory, licensing, and competition frameworks.

Express Letters

The provision of Express Letter services has been liberalised since April 1995. Any company interested in providing local and/or international Express Letter services would need to register with IMDA for a class licence under the Postal Services (Class Licence) Regulations 2005.

Local Express Letter licensees providing local delivery services must deliver the letters within the same working day. With the liberalisation of the postal services market, the price floor1 previously imposed on Express Letter licensees has been removed. Licensees are now required to ensure that express letters delivered are physically acknowledged by the recipient. These changes are implemented pursuant to amendments made in the Postal Services (Class Licence) Regulations 2005.

For more information on the existing licensing guidelines for the provision of Express Letter services, please refer to the Express Letter Guidelines (232.00KB).

1 Previously, conveyance of local express letters must be priced at no lower than S$1 or three times the local postage for an ordinary letter charged by SingPost in the first weight step of 20g, whichever is higher. For conveyance of international express letters, it must be no lower than three times the postage for an ordinary airmail letter charged by SingPost in the first weight step of 20g to the same country of destination.

CN Documents Policy

IMDA had set out in its Decision and Explanatory Memorandum on the Framework for Further Liberalisation of the Postal Services Sector in Singapore, issued on 5 February 2007, that the use of CN documents would be confined to the designated Public Postal Licensee (“PPL”) (being SingPost). This was to facilitate the performance of the PPL’s Universal Service Obligations and its fulfilment of all international agreements, conventions and undertakings relating to postal matters to which Singapore is a party (in particular, the UPU Acts). SingPost is the UPU Designated Operator in Singapore, representing Singapore in the appropriate UPU bodies. One of IMDA’s considerations was that the use of CN documents by multiple operators would pose a significant burden on the security and customs clearance operations.

In recent years, IMDA has received feedback from industry players that the postal industry has changed significantly over the years in terms of operating environment and market developments e.g. changes in the global postal and logistics landscape, as well as growth in e-commerce volumes. IMDA therefore undertook a review of its policy position in relation to the use of CN documents, seeking input from Postal Services Operators, Extraterritorial Offices of Exchange (“ETOEs”), airlines and its related entities and government agencies.

IMDA has decided to (i) allow all ETOEs based in Singapore to use CN documents for outbound mail, upon satisfying UPU’s requirements; and (ii) continue to limit the use of CN documents for inbound mail. For further details on the operational framework, please refer to the CN Documents Operational Framework (38.05KB) and ETOEs Registration Form (37.27KB).


The delivery of parcels will continue to be open to competition and does not require a licence from IMDA.

Other information on:

Acts and Regulations
Postal Services Regulations

Consultation Papers & Decisions
Postal Codes of Practice and Notifications
Reference Access Offer (RAO)
Reference Offer (RO)

Guidelines on Licensing Scheme
List of Postal Services Operators
Impression, Stamp and Identifier Mark Design Guidelines for Postal Services Operator (33.36KB)

Quality of Services
Postal Statistics and Quality of Service

Related Information

Last updated on: 14 Nov 2019