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Željko Tomić, President Of The E-Government Alliance

Digitalisation Against Bureaucracy

According to Grey Book recommendations, establishing full functionality of eGovernment entails completing all the necessary electronic registers, enabling ePayment of services and eDelivery of documents, and recruiting as many eCitizens as possible

The eGovernment Alliance is the largest NALED working body with 70 members, including businesses, local government bodies, public agencies, universities and faculties. Browsing through the new edition of the Grey Book, it becomes clear why there is such a great interest in this topic among all sectors of society. Since digitalisation is so important in simplifying administrative procedures, no less than 40% of the recommendations in our ‘regulatory Bible’ envision switching to the digital realm.

The Grey Book recommendations can help ensure that the conditions for fully functional eGovernment are met. Above all, this entails forming all the necessary electronic registers and ensuring greater use by companies and the public. This can primarily be achieved through obligatory ID cards with a microchip and a qualified electronic certificate and by motivating people to rely on the eGovernment portal more and become fully-fledged eCitizens. We have been working on this in cooperation with the Office for IT and eGovernment, with the support of the EBRD.

Two years ago, the eGovernment Alliance began by advocating the abolition of seals, and now we focus on cancelling other relics of the past such as payment slips, and enabling electronic payment options for all government services (ePayment) whether online or at counters. Furthermore, we argue for eDelivery for all government services and all proceedings before judicial authorities, switching to eInvoices and establishing an integrated system for issuing invoices, both for the public and private sectors.

No less than 40% of the recommendations in the new edition of the Grey Book envision moving our administrative procedures into the digital realm

Many companies and individuals who have had the opportunity to experience all the benefits of the eGovernment system, particularly during the COVID-19 crisis, are aware that our Alliance has inspired a great number of positive changes. Among other things, the Law on Archival Material and Archival Activity enabling permanent storage of business documentation in electronic form was adopted last year thanks to great efforts by the Alliance.

The Alliance is particularly proud of the eGovernment Programme for the period 2020–2022, adopted last year to create new electronic services. It introduces an eOffice and eArchive to enable users to check the status of their submissions online, review the data on them collected by the public sector and request any modifications if needed, with many other services to ensure transparency and efficiency in the public administration.

Local governments are the first point of contact between the public and companies on one hand and the public administration on the other, and we are proud we can help them stay up-to-date with the world of electronic services.

We would particularly like to emphasise our contribution to the continuous training of clerks in city and municipal administrations in cyber security and data storage, together with the Republic Agency for Electronic Communications and Postal Services RATEL, with the support of the Ministry of Trade, Tourism and Telecommunications.