December 9, 2009 / ELRA Secretariat
Cross-border digital signature and Digital Land Register that have been developed in the Centre of Registers and Information Systems of the Ministry of Justice reached the final of the European eGovernment Awards.
According to Ando Rehemaa, Director of Centre of Registers and Information Systems (RIK), the eGovernment competition organized by the European Commission is one of the most important national e-services competitions in Europe thanks to its extent and high-level jury.
“I am very glad that the RIK team has reached the finals of such a reputable competition with its government solutions. We are now giving it all on the finish line to bring home the award and keep the Estonian e-reputation high,” said Rehemaa.
The projects of RIK were the only ones from the Baltic States to make the finals of European e-Government Awards. “Both projects reaching the finals – the cross-border digital signature and Digital Land Register – are good examples how to reduce bureaucracy and use e-channels for the common good of the people,” said Rehemaa.
In the framework of the cross-border digital signature solution in company registration portal one state will acknowledge for the first time in Europe a digital signature of a citizen of another state. Thanks to this, it is much easier to engage in business activity in a foreign state.
“The Portuguese Company Registration Portal (Portal de Empresa) was the first one to join our cross-border digital signature project. Now, Estonian entrepreneurs do not have to go to Portugal in order to start a business, all necessary transactions can be performed with a computer at home,” explained Rehemaa. “Besides Portuguese digital signature, our company registration portal also accepts Finnish and Belgian ID Cards and Lithuanian mobile ID.”
Digital Land Register is also one of the most unique applications in Europe. “Thanks to the Digital Land Register, in terms of communication between registers the whole purchase and sale process of registered immovables is electronic in Estonia. This saves both the government money and the citizens’ time,” added Rehemaa.
European e-Government Awards has four categories. The cross-border digital signature solution of the Company Registration Portal reached the finals in the category of eGovernment supporting the Single Market. DigitalLand Register made it to the finals in the category of eGovernment enabling administrative efficiency and effectiveness.
This year, 259 projects were submitted for the competition and 52 finalists form 17 European countries were chosen. The objective of these projects is to improve public services by using e-solutions.
The award winners of the European e-Government Awards will be announced on 19th November at the 5th European Ministerial eGovernment Conference in Malmö. The final assessment of finalists will also take place there, as well as the fair of projects reaching the finals at which it is possible to get to know all the projects more closely.
The European eGovernment Competition is an initiative of the European Commission that is organized since 2003 every second year. RIK has taken part in this competition also before. In 2007, RIK was awarded the Good Practice Label for the development of Company Registration Portal of e-commercial register.