Egypt’s ICT Ministry Starts Activating Free and Opens Source Software Strategy

Minister of Communications and Information Technology Atef  Helmy , announced that the National strategy of supporting using Free and Open Source Software (FOSS) in Egypt activated.

The Ministry explained that the ministry, in a statement today that it had been assigning tasks to activate the strategy to the Software Engineering Competence Center(SECC) as a focal point of the government with regard to using Free and Open Source Software (FOSS).

The Ministry said the strategy will contribute in achieving eight main goals as an actual value for this type of software, including delivering knowledge to all citizens at the lowest cost, along with improving the governmental sector of the state, support ICT sector and maximize the competitive environment in favor of the user, attaining technological independence as well as establishing sustainable knowledge society most notably the users and developers.

Helmy also illustrated that the committee formulating the open source technology strategies will enact governmental policy aiming at including and using these technologies and adopting them as a national strategy for Egypt, noting that a pilot project for a complete transformation cycle for the ministries of ICT and local development was proposed.

The government decision to purchase Microsoft software licenses and products to upgrade government agencies at a cost exceeding $43m has triggered anger among activists and specialists, who called the decision a waste of money and asked the government to use free open source software (FOSS), instead, last December.