The second phase of the e-government project was ushered in today, with IT Minister Austin Gatt announcing that 56 more government services are now available on line.

Speaking at a press conference, Dr Gatt said the new e-government platform simplified procedures for users and reduced bureaucracy, while making more services available.

The process, he said, would continue with a further 350 services going online next year and a further 400 in the following year. 

93 services were available before today's addition.

Claudio Grech, chairman of Mita, the government's IT agency,  said that now that the most important services were online, the agency had moved to the other services, and a wide range of government application forms were being put online today, including application forms for licences for catering establishments, host families, water supply by bowser, the operation of a motoring school ,childcare facility or a summer school. There are also application forms for various government grants.

Services are available on for all those using e-id cards. 

Mr Grech said that the new services also brought in the one-stop stop service in that, with authorisation by the user, once someone applied for, say, a catering licence, related government documents and certificates needed for the processing of the application could be sourced by the responsible authority from the other government departments (as in the case of birth  or VAT certificates or police conduct records), rather than having to be provided by the applicant, thus saving time and money.

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