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Open document standards mandatory in Hungary government

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Hungary's public administrations will by default use open document standards for their electronic documents, as of April this year, the government ministers agreed on 23 December, and all public organisations are encouraged to move to open source office tools. Hungary's government also in December decided to cancel the funding of proprietary office suite licences for all schools.

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 a open standard format.

Except for the ministry of Defense, all ministries must complete the transition to using open standards before the end of March, the IT news site HWSW reported on Monday. Vilmos Vályi-Nagy, Deputy State Secretary of IT, quoted by IT news site IT Cafe, explained that the institutions have been told of the decision months before and that many are already preparing for the changes.

The government now recommends that public organisations switch to using open source office suites, reports HWSW. If not, the institutes will have to explain the technical and economic reasons why they depend on proprietary office tools.

 

School licences

The government in December also decided not to renew a proprietary office software licence deal for all of the country's schools. In a statement on Tisztaszoftver (Legal Software), a web site 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 licence contract will run out on 1 March.

The cancellation of the funding of proprietary office licences had been discussed by the government when the contract ran out in March 2011. At that time the ministry decided to extend the licence deal for one more year.

 

More information:
IT Cafe news item (in Hungarian)
IT Cafe news item (in Hungarian)
HWSW news item (in Hungarian)
IT Cafe news item (in Hungarian)
Statement by the ministry of Education (in Hungarian)

 

Information

Geographic coverage:
Hungary
Themes:
Communications