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UN E-Government Survey in the News  
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100 self-service Hukoomi kiosks planned in Qatar
Source: Gulf Times, by By Pratap John, http://www.gulf-times.com/site/topics/article.asp?cu_no=2&item_no=530280&version=1&template_id=36&parent_id=16
Source Date: Monday, September 10, 2012
Country: Qatar
Created: Sep 13, 2012

Qatar will have some 100 self-service kiosks across the country that can access e-government portal–Hukoomi services by 2015.
Through Hukoomi, citizens and residents can complete a range of important services — from applying for passports and identification cards to obtaining exit permits — from the comfort of a home computer or mobile device now and self-service kiosks later.
“This allows people to bypass paperwork and long waits at government offices and saves everyone time, energy, and other resources,” ictQATAR said in its annual report.
In 2011, ictQATAR continued refining the latest version of the one-stop-shop portal, which offers many information and transactional e-services. The most popular include obtaining residence permits and travel visas, paying utility bills and traffic tickets, and accessing a range of health services.
Hukoomi has shown “exponential growth” since launch in 2008, ictQATAR said. In 2011, the site handled a total of 2,535,674  transactions, up 14% on 2.2 million in 2010.
“This usage is expected to keep soaring, as the government plans to add 20 new e-services a year, for a total of 160 services by 2015,” ictQATAR said.
Aiming to standardise HR, finance, and procurement functions both within and between all government agencies, ictQATAR is working with international software company SAP to design and build a QR20mn central resource planning system that will make the country’s government more productive, efficient, and ultimately, paperless.
Training on the use and application of these systems is in the early stages of development, and the goal is to have at least half of all major government agencies adopt the streamlined government resource planning (GRP) system by 2015.
With goals of making it easier for international companies to do business in Qatar and helping to promote further foreign investment, ictQATAR launched the Qatar Customs Clearance Single Window (QCCSW) portal in 2011.
The automated, streamlined, single portal allows shipping companies and clearance agencies to complete all customs-related services online, including tracking cargo and paying fees online.
“Linked to Hukoomi, this portal has changed the way the government deals with imports and exports in the country, significantly reducing the typical paperwork involved in customs clearance procedures and resulting in a much easier, more efficient, and less expensive process for all parties,” ictQATAR said.
In its ongoing quest to make government more transparent, in 2011 ictQATAR started developing a legal portal that will digitise all existing Qatari laws, policies, and regulations and display them on a single online portal available to the public.
This represents a first step toward an open-access policy and also encourages foreign investment by directly presenting the legal framework for doing business in the country.
As part of the effort, ictQATAR and the Ministry of Justice developed a dictionary of legal terms to aid public understanding of the laws.
In recognition of these advances in making government even more transparent and accessible, Hukoomi won an Arab e-content award for “best e-government content in the Arab region” at the 2011 World Summit Awards, which recognise innovative and creative online content from around the globe.
The growth of the civic-centric site also helped improve Qatar’s standing on the United Nations E-Government Index by 14%, to 48th out of 190 countries, overall.
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