Govt, Microsoft still talking

The government says it is making significant progress in negotiating a revised software licensing agreement with Microsoft.

The government says it is making significant progress in negotiating a revised software licensing agreement with Microsoft.

Internal Affairs information and facilities manager Alison Fleming, who heads a team of eight government agency representatives, says key elements such as pricing, flexibility and structure of the agreement are close to being finalised. She would not say what pricing figures are being discussed but says the aim is to use the government’s bulk buying power to get a good deal.

Around 160 organisations representing more than 90,000 users have signed up to say they are interested in the negotiations.

The resulting agreements will replace the G2000 group agreements, which expire between June and September next year. G2003 will be optional and have three tiers under which agencies can purchase, depending on their size — Enterprise Agreement, Select Agreement and Open Government Agreement.

Fleming says the Enterprise Agreement option will now be more accessible to agencies, and lower entry levels across the board will make the agreements more appealing to smaller agencies.

The new agreements will be based on Licensing 6.0, which includes Microsoft’s controversial Software Assurance licensing model introduced this year.

The parties are also reviewing government agency definitions.

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