ITA Signs Agreement to Renew Microsoft Licenses and Software
The Government of Oman represented by the Information Technology Authority (ITA) recently signed an agreement to renew its licensing and software with Microsoft for another three years. HE Mohammed bin Nasser Al Khasibi, Secretary General of the Ministry of National Economy and Chairman of the ITA Board signed the agreement on behalf of the Government of Oman. Microsoft’s Ali Faramawy, Vice President, Microsoft (MEA) Middle East and Africa, and Mr. Fawzi bin Hamad Al Harasi, the CEO of EXCEED IT Services & Training, the local proxy for Microsoft in Oman were also on hand to sign the agreement.
Commenting on the significance of this renewal agreement, HE Mohammed bin Nasser Al Khasibi, Secretary General of the Ministry of National Economy and Chairman of the ITA Board said: “The whole of Oman will benefit from this agreement, not just the Government. Extending this agreement with Microsoft enables pending government IT projects to proceed, benefiting from the latest software and licenses provided by this agreement.”
Ali Faramawy, Vice President, Microsoft MEA, said: “The Strategic Partnership Agreement between the Government of Oman and Microsoft comes in the context of our commitment to the government’s plans to realise the objectives of the e.oman Initiative. Microsoft has developed a number of far-reaching programs promoting IT awareness among public and educational organisations, as well as among the business community, and wishes to further implement these programs in Oman, thereby assisting the country’s population in overcoming the digital divide and social exclusion.
“Furthermore this will encourage a higher level of technology use within the government sector, as well as well as improving lifelong learning for youth and adults by providing technology related skills through community technology and learning centres, and promoting access to public and private business services available on the Internet,” he added.
As part of the renewal agreement there is an allocation of more than 31, 000 computers and approximately 2200 servers. It also includes licensing for the use of the Windows7 operating system, with subsequent upgrades over the next three years. Additionally, the agreement includes permission to use the software program MS Office 14, plus subsequent upgrades for the agreement duration.
The agreement includes also a project to install and upgrade government programs to the latest licensed software by the Government, equal to 60% of the number of devices used and technically qualified. The local proxy, EXCEED IT Services & Training, will provide a number of benefits and training programs such as specialized training and certification in the field of Microsoft products and programs. EXCEED will implement a special training and qualification program and provide training for 60 job seekers from college graduates over three years, including specialized training programs, to include practical training and management qualification.
When contacted for his comments, Country Manager for Microsoft in Oman, Ahmad El Dandachi, expressed his gratitude to the Government of Oman in encouraging such initiatives citing big momentum for the country in Information Technology. “I am delighted to see Microsoft in the ongoing partnership with the Government to implement eGovernment initiatives and become partners for e.oman,” he said.
“The renewal of the agreement will accelerate the use of new technologies in the government sector by providing the required products and training as well as expediting the national level implementation of knowledge-based projects for which Microsoft, through the agreement, will reinvest funds and support the e.oman Initiative,” he added.
The signing of this agreement comes from the robust efforts of the Government of Oman, represented by ITA, to support and reinforce eGovernment platforms, programs, and services, through the implementation of the nation’s e.oman Initiatives. It is through the facilitation of the processes and mechanisms of technical support, and integration between governmental institutions, as well as the integration and compatibility with international conventions in the fight against piracy of electronic software and licenses.
It is the intention of the Authority as per this agreement to create an eGovernment environment with compliant and proportionate standards to upgrade all governmental computers through a periodically measured program and at appropriate intervals in line with the possibilities and needs of government institutions.