Conducting business with the Government of Jamaica has now become easier with the official launch of the GOV.JM online portal.
A one-stop shop for government-related information and services, GOV.JM will help to reduce cost, while improving efficiency.
It is a project of the Public Sector Transformation and Modernisation Programme (PTSP), Science, Energy and Technology Ministry and its portfolio agency eGov Jamaica Limited.
Among the services available are tax and traffic fine payments, as well as queries; motor-vehicle registration; bill payments; and applications for passport, birth, death and marriage certificates and driver’s licences.
The website also facilitates charitable donations through the National Education Trust (NET); applications for import and export permits and licences; and access to forms and links for doing business and investing in Jamaica.
Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Andrew Holness, said the portal represents “one of the critical elements of the transformation of the public sector”.
He noted that technology such as this will help to “eliminate hierarchical bureaucratic structures”.
“It will change them by making (bureaucracy) flatter, increase the decision-making process and make them more efficient,” he noted further.
He was speaking at the launch at the Office of the Prime Minister in Kingston on August 9.
The Prime Minister said that a public relations campaign will have to be undertaken in order to encourage Jamaicans to use the web portal.
He pointed out that for some “if they do not go over the counter, hand over their cash and get a receipt that is stamped, then they have not transacted (business).”
Mr. Holness assured that the website is secure, and users will not incur mobile data charges from the telecommunications providers.
Meanwhile, Science, Energy and Technology Minister, Dr. the Hon. Andrew Wheatley, said the launch of the web portal represents a major milestone in the provision of government services.
He said it will be a “game changer” in accessing the more than 250 ministry, department and agency websites that exist.
Dr. Wheatley noted that it is the business of Government to “ensure that it promotes seamless interaction and engagement of its citizens and (employ) methods that easily afford investors opportunities to invest in Jamaica”.
He said the Government continues to aggressively pursue steps to make Jamaica a knowledge-based society.
With GOV.JM, Jamaica joins other countries that have become leaders in providing e-Government services, such as the United Kingdom, Australia, Republic of Korea, Singapore, Finland, Sweden and France.
GOV.JM is being funded by the Government and the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) under the Public Sector Efficiency Programme.
Additional services will be provided as the web portal evolves.