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Entry candidates admitted to EU data exchange
IDA programme to create common basis for e-government

Brussels (pte057/24.04.2003/17:10) - Six EU candidate countries have now officially been included in the European government data exchange programme.

Slovenia, Poland, the Czech Republic, Malta, Estonia and Cyprus have signed related agreements with the EU Commission which allow them to use the European infrastructure to exchange data on community law and e-government .

In addition to the coordination and financing of electronic networks for data exchange among state authorities and the EU administration, the IDA (Interchange of Data between Administrations) programme enables the exchange of special software, technical guidelines and norms for the compatibility of official electronic services.

"IDA is at the heart of efforts to provide modern e-government services in the Union," said responsible EU Commissioner Erkki Liikanen.

The aim of the programme is to provide secure and efficient electronic data exchange between the various administrative levels. Up to now, the candidate countries held the status of observers in IDA working groups on topics such as net security, e-government portals, and electronic bids.

By taking up the candidate countries into the programme, the EU hopes to facilitate their integration and inclusion in community law.

The IDA programme has a yearly budget of 25m euros, which is divided among the member states. The four remaining candidate countries are to be included later in 2003.

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Contact: Newsfox Desk
Phone: + 43 - 1 - 811 40 - 319