1. A delegation dispatched by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of the Interior and Safety is on a visit to the Hellenic Republic and Romania, member states of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation Organization (BSEC), from September 27 to October 2 to seek e-government cooperation. The delegation is led by Vice Minister of the Interior and Safety Shim Bo-kyun and composed of officials of eight government agencies and organizations -- the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of the Interior and Safety, the National Tax Service, the Public Procurement Service, the Korea Internet & Security Agency, the National Information Society Agency, the Korea Local Information Research & Development Institute, and the Seoul Metropolitan City-led World Smart Sustainable Cities Organization (WeGO).
2. The Republic of Korea ranked 1st in the UN’s e-participation index and 3rd in the UN’s e–government development index in 2018. At the request of countries in the Black Sea region for cooperation on e-government technology, the ROK delegation will meet with Greece and Romania's top-level officials in charge of e-government affairs.
3. Despite their much interest in the e-government system, government documents of Greece and Romania are still largely paper-based, and partly introduced e-document systems of government agencies of those countries have yet to be standardized, making it difficult for those agencies to share documents with one another online. Accordingly, the two countries are working hard to upgrade their e-government systems.
4. In the case of Romania, the country ranked 67th in the UN’s e–government development index in 2018. However, as can be seen from its world’s No. 5 high-speed communications network in 2017 and the highest information technology (IT) experts-to-population ratio among all the EU member states, the country has great potential for growth in the field. Pursuant to its “Digital Agenda 2020” plan, Romania will invest some 250 million euros in the e-government system from 2014 to 2020.
5. The ROK delegation will meet with the vice minister of the Romanian Ministry of Communication and Information Society to conclude a memorandum of understanding on e-government cooperation; and will hold a relevant workshop. The delegation will suggest ways that the ROK and Romania can work together to introduce an e-document system and set up an integrated government-wide services portal in the latter country; share with the Romanian side outstanding smart-city cases, the national tax system (hometax) and the procurement system (Narajangteo) of the ROK; and discuss ways to work together to cultivate workforce in the cyber security field.
6. Greece, having officially declared the end of the financial bailout in August, is working hard to introduce an e-government system in order to improve the efficiency and transparency of the public sector as part of its plan to respond to its economic crisis and strengthen its national competitiveness. The ROK and Greece already concluded an MOU on the e-government system in October 2017 in the presence of the Prime Ministers of the two countries and held the first meeting of the committee for cooperation in the field.
7. During the ROK delegation’s visit to Greece, the second meeting of the committee on bilateral e-government cooperation will take place in the presence of the Minister of Administrative Reconstruction and the Minister of Digital Policy, Telecommunications and Information of Greece. In the meeting, the two sides will share and review Greece’s e-government system and its relevant plan; and discuss what follow-up measures should be taken to seek substantive cooperation toward the digitalization of government documents, the introduction of a services system that is tailored to public needs, like the “Korean Government Services” official portal, the determination of the level of the e-government system, and the development of a new technology-based services model.
8. The ROK’s head delegate Shim Bo-kyun, citing the very high brand value of the ROK’s e-government system in the world, mentioned that many countries were asking for the country’s cooperation on e-government technology. He added that the ROK should play the role as an e-government leader by first sharing its knowledge and experiences with other countries, which, in turn, would help the country’s e-government system be introduced overseas and offer relevant Korean enterprises more opportunities to build presence abroad.