The government of Latvia is encouraging the country’s public services to make open data increasingly available. At a cabinet meeting earlier this month seven ministries, including Defence, Justice and Finance, committed to share open datasets.
According to the meeting minutes, the Ministry of Defence and the Ministry of Justice will change their internal regulations before the summer, so that they can make datasets available on the country’s open data portal. Similarly, other ministries agreed to make data availability a priority.
Latvia’s Open Data Portal was launched in September last year by the Ministry of Environmental Protection and Regional Development (Vides aizsardzības un reģionālās attīstības ministrija, or VARAM).
The ministries’ commitment to open data will provide new business opportunities, including for small and medium-sized companies, Edmunds Beļskis, Deputy State Secretary for Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) is quoted as saying in an announcement by VARAM.
VARAM worked together with the Latvian Open Technologies Association and the Latvian Information and Communication Technology Association to identify data sets that could create significant economic benefits. This includes six data sets of geographic information that will be soon made available, VARAM writes.