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Page last updated at 07:57 GMT, Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Stamp price hike 'would hit elderly'

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Royal Mail wants to put up the price of a second class stamp in April by more than 50% which would mean it going up from 36p to 55p.

MPs on the Business Innovation and Skills Select Committee are so concerned by the proposal that they are investigating the plan and on the first day of the hearings they will be questioning the regulator Ofom who have already made it clear they are minded to approve the price rises.

Chairman of the Select Committee Adrian Bailey says putting up the price of stamps rather than modernising Royal Mail will "accelerate" the problems rather than solve them.

He told the Today programmes Sarah Montague that a price hike would have nothing but a "disastrous impact" on the volume of traffic of post.

But economist Ian Senior maintained that nothing could stop the declining market facing the Royal Mail and that the vast majority of people who still use the post are heavily discounted already and would not be affected.

He said that it was a "sad truth that letters are there for people who cannot send emails".


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