SYDNEY, AAP – Australia Post’s revenue soared in the back half of 2021, as COVID-19 lockdowns in major cities sparked online shopping activity and drove parcel deliveries.

But the outlook for the next six months is more subdued as the country gets back to normal after two years battling the pandemic.

Total revenue for the six months to the end of December rose 10.4 per cent to $4.8 billion.

Most of that turnover – $3.9 billion – came from the parcels and services businesses, a rise of 13.6 per cent.

In contrast, revenue for the traditional letter business was relatively flat at $935 million, despite a massive mail out for the 2021 national Census.

CEO Paul Graham said the result was a significant achievement given the ongoing disruptions to business during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Just like many businesses around the country, we have dealt with unprecedented challenges over the past year,” he said on Wednesday.

“But the ability of our people to adapt during ongoing challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic has been nothing short of remarkable.”

More than 30,000 Australia Post and StarTrack workers will get a nine per cent pay rise over the next three years, under enterprise agreements sealed during the half-year.

Australia Post, which is a federal government business enterprise, generated a first-half pre-tax profit of $199.8 million.

Looking ahead, Australia Post expects its digitally-driven businesses will be more subdued in the second half and losses in the letter business to continue.

This will contribute to an “overall loss in the next six months”, leading to a “modest” full-year profit.

The 2021/22 results will be reported in September.