Improving public services

Project description

Project title: Improvement of public services
Commissioned by: German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)
Country: Egypt
Lead executing agencies: Ministry of Planning, Monitoring and Administrative Reform (MoPMAR); Ministry of Local Development (MoLD)
Overall term: 2015 to 2021

Egypt. Using a citizen service centre. © GIZ
Egypt. Citizens using one of the service centres. © GIZ

Context
Public administration in Egypt is inefficient and characterised by poor service delivery. The public service sector currently employs around seven million Egyptians, but in many areas access to public services is very limited. Even basic services for citizens are frequently organised in a complex way and assigned to different administrative levels and authorities. For citizens it is often unclear who is responsible and which documents they need to present for which service, and how long they will have to wait.

Egypt is currently stepping up decentralisation and modernisation of its public administration. The first efforts in this direction were undertaken before the upheaval of the Arab Spring in 2011 and the consequent dissolution of several governments. Since then, the pressure to reform services has become even greater. Indeed, better public services were one of the key demands of the revolution. The Egyptian Government is therefore keen to make immediately visible improvements in services for citizens. Overall, however, in both rural and urban areas it lacks the appropriate structures and competent staff to achieve this goal.

Objective
Citizens have improved access to public services at local level.

Approach

The Egyptian people are to gain better access to services, and be guaranteed new, customer-oriented and innovative services. On behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), GIZ is working on various approaches to this end. Local citizen service centres (CSCs) are being modernised, while service provision is being expanded in areas that were previously underserved. Here, use is being made of internet-based applications and minibuses operating as mobile service units. Citizens therefore have access to standard one-stop contact points for everyday administrative services.

Working procedures and processes in administrations are also to be standardised, simplified and made transparent. Citizens will have more options for communicating and interacting with the state. For example, they will be able to establish contact via the internet, email and regular exchange forums in communities. The project is supporting training and professional development for staff in the CSCs so as to enhance their organisational and technical skills. This not only improves their service orientation but also leads to better service for citizens overall. Events, information campaigns and other channels are also used to make citizens more aware of their civic rights and duties.

Results
Well-trained staff is the key to smooth and efficient processes. By the end of 2016 the project team had provided management and administration training to around 50 employees in four local service centres in the regions and communities of Monofeya and Cairo. Citizens now have access to a public services map that sets out the 500 public services in highest demand. Here, for example, users will find information on who is responsible for which services, and which documents they require. The Ministry of Planning, Monitoring and Administrative Reform is aiming for a nationwide roll-out of the public services map to make it available to all Egyptian citizens. Improved internal structures and processes in CSCs in selected communities are directly benefiting more than 200,000 Egyptians.

Egypt. Testing the public services map in Shubra, Cairo Governorate. © GIZ

Contact

Gabriele Becker
gabriele.becker@giz.de