Oracle Corporation last week signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Ministry of Higher Education of the Government of Mozambique, consolidating and further enhancing its national strategies in Information Communication Technology and Higher Education.

This MoU provides the framework for a partnership between the Government of Mozambique and Oracle Corporation in a spirit of cooperation and mutual benefit. While the Government of Mozambique wishes to deploy state-of-the-art technologies and solutions, Oracle offers its experience, knowledge, products and solutions to meet the Government’s requirements.

"It is important for governments today not only to formulate strategies for ICT and to move towards an e-government framework, but also that they put in place a coherent plan for building skills and competency to support those strategies," said Desi Lopez Fafié, managing director, African Operations, Oracle Corporation.

"Oracle is proud to have put in place a number of very specific programmes to help build skills and capacity right across higher education institutions and governments in Africa and we are convinced Mozambique will benefit from this experience. Oracle’s solutions have already enabled a number of governments to build their foundation for e-government, including Mauritius, Uganda, Kenya, Botswana and Namibia. I believe we can make a significant contribution in Mozambique."

Oracle will conduct a series of executive workshops with key government officials in the Ministry of Higher Education and the ICT Commission to formulate jointly a roadmap for both sectors, identifying the critical path in terms of approach and solutions.

The Mozambican government has already developed its blueprint for a comprehensive e-government strategy and has developed a plan for its phased implementation ­ of which Higher Education is a part.

Other aspects of the MoU include eligibility for the Government of Mozambique to participate in specific programmes. These include Oracle’s Campus Licence Programme, which provides significant discounts on software licences, and the Oracle Academic Initiative Programme, which provides higher education institutions with free software, an Oracle-developed curriculum and subsidised training for faculty members anywhere in the world. In addition, Oracle will provide low-cost access to programmes for non-profit, non-commercial research.

"We welcome the signing of this Memorandum of Understanding with Oracle," said Mrs Lidia Brito, the Higher Education Minister and deputy Chairperson of The ICT Commission. "We believe it is important to form strategic alliances with world-class ICT players and this can only help to further boost our development in the field of Higher Education and ICT in Mozambique."

The focus on e-Government and development in Higher Education in Mozambique reflects a growing trend around the world. Typically, governments are turning to technology to help deliver better social services, greater citizen satisfaction, enhanced access to government services, faster service delivery at lower cost, and increased government revenue.

E-government projects allow central and local governments to use technology to deal not only with citizens but also with the business community, suppliers, partners and their own employees. Oracle will contribute significantly to enable similar developments in Mozambique.

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