Taiwan Aims for E-Government

Taiwan’s government is endeavoring to make full use of the Internet to boost its efficiency and enhance the island’s competitive edge, the Chinese-language Economic Daily News reported this week.

The government has been promoting computerization of its services for
eight years, Wei Chi-ling, chairman of Research, Development and
Evaluation Commission of the Executive
Yuan, told a forum with the
private sector.

Wei said the building of an online government was designated a major
infrastructure project in 1997. In addition to the RDEC, two
cabinet-level agencies — the Central Personnel Administration and the
Council for Economic Planning and Development — are at the forefront of
promoting government efficiency.

One of CPA’s projects, which started one and a half years ago, is to put
13 public services online in a so-called “full service window.” Among the
services would be household registration (which encompasses voter
registration, land tax and schooling matters) and business registration.
The online service is to be fully transparent to maintain credibility and
avoid abuse.

By the end of next year, Wei said, Taiwan will hopefully have an
“intelligent” government. Citizens will be able to identify themselves
online so that government agencies can open the relevant files and deal
with the inquiry. Such a service will be available in government offices
islandwide.

The civil servant of tomorrow will have to be capable of doing his job
entirely over the Internet, Wei emphasized.

E-commerce is another strategy the government plans to embrace.
Government procurement will be done online. Suppliers will be paid
electronically.

Wei also revealed that the government plans to put all its publications online. The distribution of digital publications will be governed by an online bookstore to be administered by the government.

The Government
Information Office
already publishes an English-language electronic newspaper every weekday, and the Office of the President has a comprehensive Web site.

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