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Ground-breaking government web portal launched


Ground-breaking government web portal launched

Prime Minister Helen Clark and State Services Minister Trevor Mallard today officially launched - govt.nz - a “one stop shop” government web portal, allowing the public easy and quick access to a vast range of central and local government information and services.

The portal was launched today with a “virtual ribbon cutting” by Helen Clark at the Mt Wellington Community Library in Panmure, Auckland.

The portal is a website that has been designed with people’s needs in mind to provide a quick and convenient way of finding government information and services from one place.

More than 3,500 government services and resources are available, ranging from what you need to know if you’ve having a child or renting a house, to information about study, work or recreation in New Zealand.

Speaking at the portal launch, Helen Clark said people expected information and services to be online and available around the clock in our homes, schools, marae, libraries and work places. “Many New Zealanders are internet-savvy and have been quick to adopt new ways of communicating both in business and in their daily lives. A recent Global Government Online study found more than 70 percent of New Zealanders surveyed had used the Internet in the previous month. That’s put New Zealand at the top of the 31 countries covered by the survey.

“Our Government is meeting this rise in demand for online services. In May 2000 we set out our e-government vision. The development of the portal is a major step in the achievement of that vision, as it will ensure New Zealanders have fast and convenient access to more than 3,500 government services and resources. “

“E-government is one of a series of government-driven information and community technology initiatives that are contributing to the development of a knowledge economy for New Zealand,” Helen Clark said.

Trevor Mallard said the technology companies who put together the portal are all New Zealand operations.

“It’s a showcase for our innovative home grown technology and expertise,” he said.

“The site development has been based on research focused on what government information and services the public wants and needs via the Internet. It’s been designed to be fast loading, and accessible to people with slower Internet access speeds, people in rural communities, and accessible to people with disabilities.” “The portal will serve as the main entry point to government via the Internet for both New Zealanders and the international community. “

If the information or service is not directly available from a government website, such as services that require face-to-face contact, the new portal will help people find out where they need to go or who to contact.

“All this has been designed and built to operate 24 hours a day, every day, and be available from anywhere in the world. It means government services are just a mouse-click away.”

“The new portal is a natural evolution from the current government website, known as NZGO (New Zealand Government Online). NZGO was one of the most popular sites in New Zealand with more than 120,000 visitors per month.

“What has been launched today is just a starting point. The portal will continue to evolve to meet people's needs. It will also broaden its coverage, especially as new online services become available,” Trevor Mallard said.

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