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Article E-gov­ern­ment

Modern public administration is essential for Germany’s economic success.

The Federal Ministry of the Interior is responsible for the strategic orientation and development of e-government in Germany. E-government helps reduce bureaucracy and modernize the public administration, making Germany a more attractive place to do business.

The Federal Minister of the Interior and the Federal Government Commissioner for Information Technology are active in various bodies and numerous projects to develop e-government, and they represent federal interests in the political sphere. The IT Planning Council is the main body for managing federal and state IT. The chair alternates between the Federal Government Commissioner for Information Technology and representatives of each of the 16 German states. The IT Planning Council adopted the National E-Government Strategy and is working to implement it.

The principal aim of this strategy and the E-Government Act is to provide more administrative services that are independent of time and location. The E-Government Act is intended to facilitate electronic communication with public administration. Moreover, it enables federal, state and local authorities to

offer more simplified, user-friendly and efficient electronic administrative services.

The key measures of this act:

• obligation for federal, state and local authorities to open up a point of access for the transfer of electronic documents;
• obligation for federal authorities to open a De-Mail access and to offer an electronic proof of identity via electronic identity (eID) card and electronic residence permit;
• principles of electronic file keeping and file scanning;
• simplified administrative procedures for electronic evidence and electronic payment;
• obligation to document and analyse processes;
• rules on the supply of machine-readable data by the administration (“open data”);
• obligation to meet publication requirements through electronic publication and promulgation in official gazettes.

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