The Dutch government’s online messaging system is now used by 3 million users, the government announced in January. The “Berichtenbox” (message box) is used by the Tax Department, Vehicle Authority and the Employee Insurance Agency to contact citizens. The system will also be used by municipalities.
The Dutch government in January launched a second campaign to encourage citizens to sign up, inserting a leaflet with the annual tax declaration form.
The campaign “Goodbye blue envelope”, (referring to the envelopes in which tax declarations are sent) should see more citizens register for the eGovernment messaging service. The campaign is the tax authorities’ latest step towards modernising its interaction with citizens, the central government said.
The Berichtenbox offers a safe and convenient way to communicate with Dutch public administrations. Apart from tax declarations and government service requests, the message box can be used to notify the administration of changes.
The Dutch tax authorities will increasingly switch to using electronic messages. The agency will address groups with special needs, working together with community organisations and providers of social services. Getting rid of the blue envelope could take 5 to 7 years.
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Some neighbouring countries are offering similar services. In Denmark Digital Post now reaches 89% of all Danes over 15 years of age. The service started in November 2014. Germany launched it De-Mail last August.