Electronic billing as part of e-government is still not a reality, but key decisions could happen in the next few months.
The e-government unit has commissioned research from the NZ Institute of Economic Research, and has drawn lessons from what Inland Revenue has done along this line. IR led the initial investigation into e-billing, and "they came up with some issues that needed further investigation. So we commissioned NZIER to do that," says e-government unit head Brendan Boyle.
NZIER has been asked to look at who and what products and services are in the e-billing market, where it is heading and what is the optimum time for government to enter it, if at all, Boyle says. "We need to analyse the findings and decide whether to move ahead."
NZ Post's eBill is "the only mature offering" on the New Zealand market to date, he says, though Telecom is working on a competitive offering.
The unit plans to take its survey findings to its advisory board in early August. The board may then decide to move immediately, or wait for a more opportune time.