HCMC accelerating digital government establishment

Ho Chi Minh City is launching the Government’s project ‘Developing an Application for Population Database, Digital Identification and Authentication for the National Digital Transformation from 2022-2025, with a Vision to 2030’ (Project 06). This has shown the city’s determination in completing its digital transformation, transforming itself into a smart city, and effectively operating the common database.

After 6 months implementing Project 06, HCMC has seen significant achievements. The most remarkable one is the preparation for a consistent system to process administrative procedures, which will be launched this October, to improve service quality. When in operation, this system will access existing citizen identity information in the National Population Database, so that city dwellers will not need to declare their information time after time for different administrative procedures.

The system will offer all 403 level-3 and level-4 public services online as well as 25 essential public services listed in Project 06. This means all 1,733 administrative procedures will be offered online for the local authorities of all districts and Thu Duc City to easily answer the requests of citizens. Right now, only the marriage registration cannot be done online, but others like birth registration, death registration will be performed online at level 3.

Vice Chairman of HCMC People’s Committee Duong Anh Duc stated that the launch of this system can both fulfill the city’s political goal according to Project 06 and accelerate the establishment of a digital government in HCMC via administrative reform.

One matter that has attracted much concern from the public is the use of chip-based citizen ID cards to register for medical examination and treatment under health insurance. As related systems are not fully synchronized, most ID cards contain no health insurance information, especially those whose owners change from the 9-digit citizen ID cards to 12-digit ones. In addition, many hospitals in HCMC have not equipped themselves with necessary card readers, nor have they updated their local systems to access information on these modern chip-based cards. This has led to difficulties in using such cards for the medical registration process.

One prominent obstacle when implementing Project 06 is that the registration for a public service account requires the registrant to be the licensed user of a sim card, which most mobile phone users now cannot satisfy.

Also, in many state departments and agencies, the one-stop stations to receive citizens’ documents for administrative procedures are not linked to the National Population Database, resulting in no necessary information to fill in e-registration forms.

Finally, in many locations in HCMC, the Internet line is not really reliable and stable, requiring much time to fix when incidents happen. This has, to some extent, affected the speed of processing documents for online public services.