People live in era of unlimited possibilities. In this context, changes are considered to be an integral part of the development of individual, society and even the state. Just imagine that there were periods, when postal pigeons were the only means of communication at distance. And now look at your flagship and smartphones with various functions. You can write messages online and make audio and video calls to any country.
The world does not stand still and changes in lighting speed, and this mobile phone, which in your hands, is a product of technological development. What are the requirements of the world society today? The concept of universal digitalization is in the agenda. The sooner states and individuals understand necessity and benefit of this process; the faster they can use modern goods not wasting one of the most valuable things – their time.
As the Chairman of the Board of JSC “National Infocommunications Holding “Zerde” Ruslan Yesenbayev noted in one of his interviews, the course on digitalization will greatly facilitate the life of the population of Kazakhstan.
“Nowadays we can purchase any goods or services online. We use navigation tools to find the right route. A person can register its business within an hour instead of 30 days. And all these thanks to digitalization,” stated he.
In the near future, the queues in hospitals and protracted processing of various kinds of documents, like ineffective development of economies of the states, will be in the past. A vivid example of this is the experience of countries, whose strategic priority is digitalization.
For example, one of the steps towards building of successful society in Singapore was the digital transformation of the economy. According to the report of the company Unacast, Singapore is in the top of list of the smartest cities of the world. Digital literacy is taught even in the kindergarten. It is expected that 50% of the transport in the country will be electric by 2050. Nowadays unmanned taxi is used there.
Germany is also actively supporting and implementing digital transformations. The government initiated “Digital Agenda”, which includes seven areas of activity. The agenda covers all areas of society life: from public administration, economics, culture, education to science. Digital transformations are understood not clearly as technological ones, but as a social process, affecting issues of freedom and democracy.
The Government of Australia is interested in the development of blockchain technologies, both for digital currencies and for other applications. Within the framework of the Australian bill “Digital Economy Strategy”, termination of “double taxation” towards digital currencies is stipulated.
Malaysia launched terrestrial on-air digital television. As part of the global digitalization process, the country is systematically moving from outdated analogue broadcasting to DTT technology.
So, the last years became a real boom of technological innovation. Nowadays more than 15 countries of the world implement national digitalization programs. Among them are Denmark, Norway, Great Britain, Canada, Germany, Saudi Arabia, India, Russia, China, South Korea, Malaysia, Singapore, Australia and New Zealand. It should be noted that Kazakhstan is also among them.
Since the beginning of 2018, the country started implementation of national program “Digital Kazakhstan”. The government set tasks in five key areas. Let’s consider each of them in details.
- “Digitalization of economic sectors” implies qualitative transformation of traditional sectors of the economy of the Republic of Kazakhstan, using breakthrough technologies and opportunities. As a result, labour productivity and capitalization are expected to increase.
So, there will be competitive export production in priority sectors, volume of local e-commerce will grow, and share of shadow economy will reduce to the level of top-30 countries of the world by 2022.
“For example, high-quality transport and logistics infrastructure involves the introduction of artificial intelligence on the roads. We will have weighing systems in motion and fees charging on road sections. All this will help to increase volume of transit cargo transportation and improve the quality of services for all participants of the process,” said Ruslan Yesenbayev.
Extracting and processing industries, energy and agro-industrial complexes are priority for digitalization by industries in Kazakhstan. Special attention is paid to development of electronic commerce by means of non-cash payments.
- “Transition to digital state” implies provision of open, transparent and convenient opportunities, available at any time in “online” mode for citizens and businesses. It is expected that the share state services, received in electronic form, will increase to 80%, and large Kazakhstan cities will transfer to the concept of “Smart City” by 2022.
If to specify, within the framework of initiative “State-to-Citizens”, reduction of paperwork and demand for certificates is stipulated. This clause is related to many areas, from education to health care. For example, electronic labour exchange consolidates state systems and private employment agencies into a common Internet site, and information system “Unified State Real Estate Cadastre” will allow to each newly appeared object to appear on the map in online mode, whether it is a house or a road, when passing public service procedures.
“State-to-Business” involves creation of “Single Window”, which will save the business from the need to provide paper documents to the customs. It is expected that entrepreneurs will use electronic invoices, using Blockchain technologies.
“Digital technologies in the framework of second trend will also allow creation of comfortable cities for residents and tourists in Kazakhstan. This will cause of decrease in the level of crime and increase self-consciousness of Kazakhstanis”, said Ruslan Yesenbayev in one of his reports.
- “Implementation of digital Silk Way” will provide high-speed and secure access to Internet, as well as high-quality coverage of mobile communications throughout the country.
According to information of the Chairman of the Board of JSC “National Infocommunication Holding “Zerde”, one of the most important projects on coverage of the most remote areas of the country is provision of 2616 villages with broadband Internet access. This is planned to be done by 2020.
“In the nearest future private individuals and companies will have ubiquitous and high-speed access to global data networks” – noted he.
Innovation laboratories will be created for Big Data, malicious code and cyberncidentates analysis within the framework of strengthening of cybersecurity.
- “Development of human capital” includes the process of improvement of digital literacy of the population and development of new competencies. This will be possible by means of innovations in education. Therefore, emphasis will be made on development of creative and critical thinking, as well as on usage of modern educational technologies during education.
Introduction of new specialties in universities (science on data, artificial intelligence, cloud computing, etc.), opening of ICT departments on the basis of production, training to basic and professional digital skills – these and many others will qualitative impact on creation of creative society and its transition to new realities.
- “Creation of innovation ecosystem” implies development of technological entrepreneurship with stable relations between business, scientific area and the state. In this context, introduction of innovations in production is considered as extremely important and necessary.
For example, a large number of Kazakhstani technological companies are expected to appear with their “success stories” by 2022.
“Our society, particularly children, shall have new ideals. Not only well-known musicians, actors, singers, sportsmen, but also Kazakhstani technological entrepreneurs. Observing such examples, children will strive to master such areas as IT-technologies and entrepreneurship. And we will support them and help them”, said Yesenbayev.
In turn, Astana Hub will become international park of IT start-ups. Within this area, a special place is given to the development of private professional industry of venture capital.
Five main areas of the program are designed to accelerate the pace of development of the Kazakhstani economy, to improve the quality of life of citizens and to simplify relations between the population and the state, business and the state.
“Digital Kazakhstan” is a strategic area of the country’s development, but not one of the short-term tasks. Time is necessary in order to come to the horizons indicated in the national program. In this context, digitalization is a global trend, which shall not be perceived as a threat. This global and inevitable process shall be perceived as a necessity not only from the point of view of introducing technologies, but also from the position of its usage in intercultural and inter-state dialogue.
In era of rapid changes, the competitiveness of a country is determined by people, staff, and future generations. The Head of state also noted this fact in its Message.
“Key priority of educational programs shall be development of ability to adapt to changes constantly and assimilation of new knowledge,” – emphasized it.
In today’s realities, the population of Kazakhstan shall be ready not only to reformation of life and business areas, but also to transformation of its consciousness. The ability to keep up to the times and remain professionals in high demands – such advantages are included into the process of digitalization.
Nowadays digitalization is in the agenda in Kazakhstan, as well as all over the world. It does not mean that the country is at the very beginning of its path. So, well-known portal “electronic government” was introduced in 2006 for the first time. Nowadays portal users are more than 6 million people. Government purchases are performed through portal Goszakup.gov.kz in real time mode since 2010. This ensures the transparency of the process and effectiveness of budgetary funds usage.
Kazakhstanis can transfer funds for payment of 120 types of taxes, state duties, fines, as well as utilities and mobile communications since 2011, and they can receive all kinds of licenses and permits on-line on Elicense.kz portal since 2012. Also, operating e-Trial cabinet, e-Healthcare, “Open Government” are considered as logical and systemic steps along the way of digital transformation.
“In order to correspond to new time, we have to combine in a single nation – a nation, which is on the verge of a historic ascent in terms of the Fourth Industrial Revolution”, – so Nursultan Nazarbayev concluded its message to the people of Kazakhstan.
Of course, main results will be observed within the next decades, when digital sector will be formed as a new branch of the economy, but nowadays Kazakhstani people became part of a global process with unlimited possibilities. And as technologies become more important today in everyday life, the importance of trust in the digital environment is growing.