On 8 October I announced that the Government has approved, subject to contract, the launch of a national postcode system in 2015. A postcode operator will design and run the postcode under license for an initial ten year period extendable at the discretion of the Minister for Communications by a further five years. The new postcode system will provide a unique code to every postal address in Ireland, including individual apartments. The Postcode will be a 7 character code in the format A65 B2CD, with the first three characters relating to a general area or postal district in which the address is located. The code denoting the general area will not be based on a placename and, therefore, will be language neutral. In Dublin, the existing postcodes will appear as the first three characters of the 7 character code.