Australia to push 'online government' model overseas

The federal government's pledge to move all services online by the end of 2001 has reportedly made Australia a world leader in e-government with overseas leaders seeking advice on how to follow suit.

Parliamentary secretary to the IT Minister, Senator Ian Campbell, said he receives calls regularly from governments overseas seeking information on how to move online and this has resulted in the creation of Australia's own "government on-line" trade missions to work with other countries wishing to leverage the Internet.

Australia's first mission is to the UK next week (Feb 26) following an announcement by the British government to move all its services online by 2005 opening up a market worth more than $18 billion or 20 per cent of total business expenditure on IT in the UK.

A total of 16 Australian companies make up the delegation offering applications and services specific to government.

Western Australia-based outsourcing provider and systems integrator Amcon Solutions Group (ASG) will be bidding for business in the UK and the company's CIO Colin Leman said the mission is an introduction to a huge market.

"We specifically focus on the enterprise or large computer environments and have already worked with government in Australia; we are one of only two companies in the delegation from WA," Leman said.

The on-line delegation will work with the UK government on data protection, PKI, intellectual property rights, electronic transactions, privacy, e-procurement, re-engineering of backend processes and architecture implications.

Austrade's senior trade commissioner Fiona Buffinton said the aim is to introduce companies that have already proved themselves locally.

"We want to put our best foot forward; we're not going in with our B-league," she said.

Editor's note: see also today's story "Authority figures".

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