Election-year Budget largesse has extended to IT, in a modest way.
Minister of Information Technology Maurice Williamson has announced an additional $405,000 over three years to "speed up the movement" in the area of electronic commerce.
The $405 000 will be used by the Information Technology Policy Group at the Ministry of Commerce to address e-commerce issues and deliver more certainty to businesses, according to a release from the minister.
Williamson said it was "critical" that any legislative or regulatory barriers to the development of e-commerce were removed.
"Security and trust are major issues, and we need a legal environment where companies can choose to conduct their business electronically with the same certainty they enjoy with traditional methods," he said.
"New Zealand is well-positioned to be a leader in e-commerce, and we are determined to provide the environment necessary for New Zealand enterprises to adopt this new and exciting mode of business," Williamson said.
He said World Trade Organisation estimates that worldwide Internet commerce would reach more than $ US5 billion by 2001 underlined the impact E-Commerce would have on New Zealand.
"It's extremely important because it removes the barrier of our geographical isolation, stimulates innovation and encourages the development of new and valuable products. But there are things we need to address to reap the full rewards."