Taxe Perçue and North Korea: why use TP labels?


Sometime in 2021 Willem van der Bijl sent us these photos. Do you recognize these and know anything in particular about them? Such as period of usage etc. And do you perhaps own such items as well? I would love to see the TP labels you’ve got. Are they the same or are there more designs than the ones Willem van der Bijl showed?

Fig. 1: Blue TP label.
Fig. 2: Red TP label, doubles as airmail label.

Anthony Bard, a highly specialized DPRK Korean War era collector, gave us this comment on the TP labels:

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1 thought on “Taxe Perçue and North Korea: why use TP labels?

  1. These TP labels (blue frame+locomotive = surface, red frame+airplane = air) are very scarce and were only used in the early 1950s. The b&w one shown is also rare. Soon, North Korea introduced the well known, usually bilingual T.P. handstamps, framed or non-framed, mostly in violet colour. #E.g. the new issue announcements by “Chulpanmul” and predecessors in unsealed european letter size envelopes to foreign dealers/collectors
    What that all has in common is, that these are printed matters, posted in bulk , mostly to organizations and not invidivuals.

    I dont see cheating here.

    UPU members handle their internal balance by the number (today ?weight) of mails of certain categories (e.g. letter mail bags), not by the rate of affixed postage by meters or stamps.

    AFAIK TP marks/handling was introduced on a UPU scale effective July 1, 1935.
    The purpose of T.P. mails internationally (there are corresponding inland services with local language names) is easy posting of bulk amount mails, whether letters or printed matters, including periodicals, without using affixed postage (stamps, meters ec.). TP marks may be printed or handstamped by senders, provided they apply to the style/size ruled by postal authorities.


    CG auctions recently had a lot or two with these early labels, guess You noted it.
    I dont have even one item with these early labels in my collection unfortunately.

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