Kazakhstan Needs to Reboot Its Digital System of Public Administration

What you have to know about it

Russian SBER and the government of the Republic of Kazakhstan agreed to cooperate in developing a new digital platform for the government as an alternative to the current eGov website. On September 9, some sensitive issues of user data security were discussed by experts.

The Ministry of Digital Development, Innovations and Aerospace Industry believes that the new digital platform is absolutely necessary for the people of Kazakhstan and its economy. Even though some experts worry about user data security, Digital Minister Bagdat Musin says the country needs to reboot the system.

«Despite all our success in the area of digitalization we need to move to a new level,» he said during online debates on the topic. The way out is the creation of a new digital platform, according to the minister.

«President Tokayev has ordered to carry out complex analysis and develop a concept not of digitalization but digital transformation of the public administration. Currently, the Digital Kazakhstan program (not eGov) consists of more than 400 different IT systems. They are not the same in terms of quality; they use different technologies and were built by 400 IT teams from 30-40 independent companies. Of course, they do not feel good about an idea of a single platform. They are used to making money on contracts with the government and would prefer to leave things as they are,» Musin stated.

The digital agency did research and concluded that the best option is a platform solution offered by SBER, which has advanced technical solutions for digital transformation, adoption of platform model for digitalization, and Data-Driven Government concept implementation.

What the possible result might look like?

The government has to analyze a huge volume of data before it makes any decision. For example, during the pandemic last year, the government realized that there is no reliable data about those who need assistance and those who don’t. With help of the new platform, Kazakhstan’s government will be able to see the full picture of the population in every region. As a result, those who really need help will receive all social benefits and payments in just one click. Moreover, this digital transformation may also help to minimize costs for technical support.

«We are not going to replace eGov, which is just a single place for many services supported by those 400 IT teams,» said Musin. He insists that the platform approach will let the government keep population data more accurate, which is crucial for the decision-making process.

The current digital system of public administration is scrappy. That’s why the transformation looks like a replacement of thousands of ramshackle houses with several brand-new multistory apartment houses. And of course, the government pays close attention to the security, that’s for sure, says Musin. Any decision in this sensitive field is made after approval by relevant agencies while not contradicting the Kazakhstan Cyber-shield concept. Moreover, there are no plans to somehow unify Russian and Kazakhstani digital platforms, the minister added.

«All we want are software and technical support from SBER as a vendor. The company will show us all source codes, provide unlimited access and install the system on our servers. They should also train Kazakhstani specialists on how to work with the platform. In the future it’ll be our own asset open not only for big IT companies but for all local IT design engineers,» Musin stated.

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