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Government declares e-governance now a top priority amid pandemic

Chea Vannak / Khmer Times Share:
Aun Pornmoniroth, Minister for Economy and Finance. KT/Siv Channa

The Government has stated its commitment to making e-governance a priority during the COVID-19 outbreak to ensure services remain timely and available, according to senior government officials.

“COVID-19 has placed significant pressure on the nation’s telecommunications system because ofsocial distancing and other health measurements put in place. This has required converting governance from old analogue systems to new digital ones,” said the Cambodian Minister for Economy and Finance Aun Pornmoniroth, at an office-taking ceremony held yesterday.

Aun stated, building a digital government is now the main focus for the administration. Outlining that digital governance will create a stronger, smarter and more accountable government that can fulfil its role with efficiency for the people.

“This reform should be a deep reform and completely cover the public sector and the whole governance system,” Aun said

“Over the medium and long-term, the government should focus on enhancing the efficiency of state institutions. In turn, providing faster and better quality public services, however, this will be dependent on using digital and communication technology,” added Aun.

Lim Heng, vice-president of the Cambodia Chamber of Commerce also said yesterday, that online-based working practices for government ministries and institutions will enhance the transparency of services, while also, saving time and particularly combat corruption.

“The government has already started working towards e-governance through implementing an online-based process for services within some ministries and institutions.

This is an ongoing reform that now needs to be accelerated because of the COVID-19 pandemic. We need to build human resources and move forward with digital technology,” Heng said.

However, Heng warned that a lot of work will need to be done before the government can move to be fully digitalised, citing that important bureaucratic practices will need to be thoroughly practised online first.

“We will need to ensure that ministries practise online registration and other online work processes to ensure a smooth transition. Both the private sector and public sector will have to come together to ensure this reform is successful,” Heng added.

E-government was originally established by the Ministry of Industry, Science, Technology, and Innovation in a bid to respond to emerging digital innovation and global technological trends.

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