Bulgaria Shells Millions for Administration's Microsoft Upgrade
Bulgaria will shell BGN millions to purchase Windows 8 Microsoft software for the needs of the State administration.
The information was reported at a briefing Monday by the Chief Secretary of the Council of Ministers, Rosen Zhelyazkov, who listed the amount as BGN 62 M, down from the budget forecast of BGN 90 M – a reduction the State was able to secure through the public tender.
The purchase involves 96 000 licenses for a period of 3 years. The procedure had begun on February 22.
Zhelyazkov says that if public procurement orders were to be divided among different administrations, the price for the upgrade would have been 50% to 100% higher.
About 70% of the administration now uses Windows 7, and the rest – the older XP and Vista versions. The goal of the public tender is for the country to receive rights to acquire in the next three years all new versions of the operational system and all of its applications.
Deputy Transport Minister, Valeri Borisov, reported that requests of different institutions have exceeded the cabinet's expectations by far and have reached BGN 150 M. He stressed that the criteria for the public tender are fully transparent and there are hundreds of businesses in the EU that could win the bid. The commission to select the winner will include NGOs as well.
The upgrade will envolve all computers in the State and local administration, including those of the National Social Security Institute, NOI, the National Health Insurance Fund, NZOK, the Ministries of Interior and Defense, the Parliament, and the judicial system. It will be crucial in the launch of the so-called electronic government, according to Borisov.
Both officials assured that there would be no hardware problems to install Windows 8 on all computers regardless of the current system they have.
US Microsoft is expected to release Windows 8 on the market in the fall.
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