The minister's decision on open standards instructs public administrations to save their documents, spreadsheets and presentations only in standard formats that are accepted by international standard organisations. Public administrations are required to be able to receive and handle documents sent to them, and all official documents must be made available in an open standard format.
Except for the ministry of Defense, all ministries must complete the transition to using open standards before the end of March 2012, a Hungarian IT news site reported. Vilmos Vályi-Nagy, Deputy State Secretary of IT, quoted by another online IT news site, explained that the institutions have been informed about the decision months before it was issued and that many have already been preparing for the changes.
The government now recommends that public organisations switch to using open source office suites, according to the first Hungarian online news site. If not, the institutes will have to explain the technical and economic reasons why they depend on proprietary office tools.
The government also decided not to renew a proprietary office software license deal for all of the country's schools. In a statement on Tisztaszoftver (Legal Software), a website aiming to reduce the use of unlicensed software, the Ministry of Education explains that the measure is intended to boost competition in this area. "The ministry is convinced that the needs of the educational institutions can be satisfied by using free and open source software."
The current proprietary license contract will run out on 1 March 2012.
The cancellation of the funding of proprietary office licenses had been discussed by the government when the contract ran out, in March 2011. At that time the ministry decided to extend the license deal for one more year.
- Original news article - Joinup platform - European Commission
- Background information - ePractice eGovernment Factsheet for Hungary