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26 May 2009 – The State Services Commission (of New Zealand) today announced the government has concluded negotiations with Microsoft on a pan-government agreement for the next three years.

It became apparent during discussions that a formal agreement with Microsoft is no longer appropriate.

Great! Time for Oman ITA to take a look at its global Microsoft licensing.

The New Zealand government has been very pro-active in deriving value for money through support for transparent licensing, and even open-source:

SSC wins special award for promoting open source in government
September 29, 2008

. . . .

Laurence Millar, Government CIO says the SSC won an award for overall leadership in the promotion of open source in government in New Zealand.

. . . .

In fact while it’s great to receive this open source award. In government we are looking wider than making software freely available. In government we’re not just striving for open source we are really working on open data.

By that I mean we are committed to making public information accessible to everyone.

Information should be available in the way you want it, when you want it. It means that while respecting the individual’s privacy, government held information should be available for use and reuse by the community.

That’s a challenge in itself but government is in the information business – a business that is changing dramatically. Our task is taking a bureaucracy that was built for the industrial age and transforming it to meet the needs of the information age.