As of: 09/2022
Waiting weeks for an application to be approved? Travelling to the capital for the submission of tender documents? This is a thing of the past in Benin. The government is focusing on digitalisation and, with the support of KfW, has set up a nationwide data network that links ministries and town halls quickly and effectively. Solar power systems are also installed to prevent power outages, as the best computer is useless without energy. However, the Smart Gov project ensures not only secure data transfer, but also greater transparency in the actions of the authorities – progress that benefits citizens.
|Project title||“Smart Gov” – Programme de Renforcement des Structures Centrales de Gouvernance (PRSCG)|
|Commissioned by||German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)|
|Project partners||Ministry of Digitalisation, Benin|
Digitalisation is a key pillar of the Benin government’s programme for the period from 2021 to 2026. It intends to boost the modernisation of Benin’s public administration and efficient governance.
A major challenge here is the networking of public administrations at both central and decentralised levels. The municipalities are also due to be connected to a national government network.
Until now, authorities and ministries exchanged some of their data in paper form or using external media. This involves high security risks, is prone to errors in data transmission and recording, and offers an open door to corruption.
Few town halls have a functioning internal data network that allows users to share data. The electricity supply is not always stable, which hampers the use of IT.
As part of the national decentralisation strategy, the IT infrastructure of the town halls in the municipalities is being built, modernised and connected to the government network. In future, all public administration IT applications should be web-based.
On behalf of the German Federal Government, KfW Development Bank is supporting the Benin government’s digitalisation efforts towards transparent and efficient public administration through the “Smart Gov” project (Programme de Renforcement des Structures Centrales de Gouvernance – PRSCG).
The aim of the project is to finance and create a reliable and secure network that can be used to introduce web-based IT applications.
Network access is made possible thanks to newly installed fibre optic cables, the rental of capacities in the existing fibre optic cable network and wireless technology. The network meets international standards for reliability and data security. A concept for data governance is being developed to provide assurances of data security, integrity and quality.
Without electricity, the best IT infrastructure is useless. For this reason, emergency power generators and photovoltaic systems are being installed to supply the networks with electricity with support from the KfW project.
The executing agency ASIN (Agence des Système d’Information et du Numérique) is implementing the project under the supervision of the Ministry of Finance and Economic Affairs and the Ministry of Digitalisation. A higher-level steering committee chaired by the Ministry of Finance monitors the project strategy. This committee includes representatives of ministries and authorities that benefit from and implement the government network and its applications. In addition, a technical monitoring committee, led by the Ministry of Digitalisation, monitors technical aspects of the implementation of the project.
Representatives for digitalisation support the connection of town halls to the national network at the municipal level. As multipliers, they contribute to the introduction of new processes and procedures in municipal administration and ensure use of new IT applications.
The nationwide IT network is already up and running. The national data centre will form the heart of the network, providing IT applications for all ministries in the country and securing their data. The 77 municipalities should also have access to IT applications so that they can carry out their public administration tasks effectively, securely and transparently.
The project enhances the performance capacity of public administration, in particular its public finance function. This means that improved government and municipal services are available to the people of Benin. A uniform network connection for public administration bodies in Benin is considerably more efficient than the individual solutions of the individual authorities that were previously used. This results in cost savings for the authorities of the Ministry of Finance and Decentralisation. Standardisation of process and approval steps enhances transparency and accountability of public administration authorities. The data situation for political decision-making has been improved.
The sustainable operation of the IT network and data security are guaranteed by a coherent operation, maintenance and security concept.
By improving public finance management and modernising public administration, the project contributes to the promotion of good governance.
The project contributes to the achievement of these following United Nations Sustainable Development Goals:
KfW Development Bank
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