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Promoting the "once-only" principle, which involves extending the situations where the public administrations re-use information concerning citizens or companies, which they already have, without requesting it again, is one of the key guidelines at European level in the field of e-government, to which Romania must align. 

As per this principle, natural and legal persons provide data (information and documents) to the public administration only once, without the obligation to present them to another public institution if previously submitted. At the same time, public administration bodies must ensure the sharing and re-use of data, even at cross-border level, in compliance with personal data protection regulations. 

Along with simplifying the interaction with the authorities and between the authorities themselves, the application of the principle also has an important macroeconomic impact on the business environment. 

From our analysis carried out within the project “Establishing the framework for the development of e-government instruments (EGOV)”, the application of this principle in Romania could generate savings of approximately EUR 180 million per year, respectively savings of approximately EUR 1.8 billion over a period of 10 years. Given that the benefits of applying the once-only principle can be reflected mainly at the level of companies that would access public services in a simplified form, we estimate that about 50% of these amounts could represent savings for companies, i.e. EUR 90 million/year or EUR 900 million over a period of 10 years. 

Although we are not yet at the level of other European countries, Romania is making progress in ensuring the interoperability of systems and registers and, therefore, towards the application of the "once-only" principle, so as to reduce as much as possible bureaucracy and the burden for citizens / businesses that request public services and, at the same time, to simplify, secure and speed up public administration processes. From a legislative point of view, the exchange of data and documents between some public institutions is expressly regulated only for certain specific situations.

 

About the project “Establishing the framework for the development of e-government tools (EGOV)”: The EGOV project is implemented by the Romanian Digitization Authority (ADR), in consultation with EY Romania and with legal support from Radu and Asociații SPRL, the affiliated law firm of EY. The project is coordinated from the part of EY Consulting by Carmen Adamescu, Partner. The lawyers advising on this projects are Andrei Ştefanovici and Irina Bîcă.