Netherlands to make Open Source mandatory

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The Netherlands Government has decided that all Dutch public authorities will be required to switch to Open Source. A proposal to this effect has been recently tabled by the government.

The decision is part of a government action plan sent to parliament and aims at making public authorities less reliant on ICT suppliers. The move will also boost innovation in the country by giving smaller software designers more opportunities. The Netherlands Government has also said that open source will facilitate data exchanges between authorities, business and private citizens. However, the proposal has room for few exceptions that may be permitted in unavoidable situations. The Ministry of the Interior will make similar arrangements with the provinces, municipalities and water authorities. Agreements on the switch to Open Source are also being prepared with care services, education authorities, social security offices and other sectors. The country has decided to set up a special programme bureau to assist all administrations with the changeover.

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