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Chile's online government procurement portal ChileCompra has removed the electronic signature category from the official list of services demanded by government institutions, BNamericas has learned.
The move is seen as a "contradiction" by service providers as it goes against the government's digital agenda, which seeks to speed up and encourage the adoption of ICT in Chile.
"I don't know the reason [behind this decision] but I think there is a contradiction, because, on the one hand, we have the government promoting the digital agenda and on the other hand, removing, from the list of priorities, the electronic signature," Chilean electronic signature and certificate provider Acepta's general manager Gonzalo Au told BNamericas.
Au said that five government providers of the service are in meetings to discuss the issue and to "try to understand" the reasons behind the government resolution.
According to a source close to the economy ministry, the reason behind ChileCompra's decision has to do with the fact that the government is prioritizing framework agreements that have better results in terms of sales and, because electronic signatures sell less, the policy is to remove them.
"As an example, this year ChileCompra added IT development to their list of needs, and since April this year, this service is part of the framework agreement, so we have a list of companies who can provide us with this service, from developers to project managers," the source said.
"So I can imagine that this one is selling much more because this was one of the hardest services to call on a tender, but as far as I know, the priority is to keep on the list those products with greater demand and remove others, like the electronic signature."