Iceland’s government issued a new policy on information technology this week, presented during a conference on the Day of Information Technology on May 7. The policy is entitled “Iceland, the Web Country” and is aimed at developing electronic administration.
The policy, which was presented by Prime Minister Geir H. Haarde, involves the vision that Iceland will become a leading nation in electronic administration by 2012.
In his speech, Haarde said there has been shortage in supply of service from governmental institutions on the internet and that comparable countries are ahead of Iceland in this regard.
“Service is the red thread in the new policy. The vision for the future is for Iceland to be leading in electronic service and utilization of information technology,” Haarde stated in a press release from the Prime Minister’s Office.
“Both individuals and companies can benefit greatly from improved service and save both time and money. The efficiency of government operations will also be increased from which the community as a whole will benefit,” Haarde added.
Among projects mentioned in the government’s “Iceland, the Web Country” policy is increased emphasis on self-service on the internet. Individuals and companies should for example be able to fill out forms and applications electronically and schedule appointments.
Documents will thus travel between institutions via the internet so people won’t have to travel between different institutions with their papers. Queues should thus disappear completely.
Electronic identification cards, electronic payments and electronic shopping are also on the government’s agenda.
A number of other projects in the field of information technology will be developed in the next few years aimed at improving and increasing electronic administration in interaction between governmental institutions and the public.