CAPTION: With the "Smart Country Convention" Bitkom wants to offer a platform for digitalisation. (Daniel Reinhardt/dpa/archive)
Cities and communities in Germany have a lot of catching up to do when it comes to digitalisation, according to the German digital association Bitkom.
"We have been talking about eGovernment for decades already," Bitkom president Achim Berg said.
With a new "Smart Country Convention" in Berlin, Bitkom wants to "show how it can be done." The event, co-organised with the trade fair company Messe Berlin, is meant to offer a new platform for the digitalisation of the public sector and help accelerate processes.
The opening of the event - which brings together representatives from local government, politics, associations and the digital economy - coincided Tuesday with the official launch of Germany's portal for e-invoicing, following a six-month pilot phase.
Based on a joint project by the states of Bremen, North Rhine-Westphalia and Rhineland-Palatinate, federal authorities should henceforth receive and process invoices electronically. The legislative process is also due to be fully digitised, said Klaus Vitt, State Secretary at the German Interior Ministry.
The Smart Country Convention features an expo as well as lectures, training programmes, a start-up competition and networking opportunities. Its stated goal is to create momentum for administrative projects.
"We all do not have any problem recognizing the issue," Berg noted. But the time has now come to take decisions, he said.
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