OTTAWA (Reuters) - The Canadian government will reduce its 100 different e-mail systems to one as part of a plan to deliver C$4 billion ($4.1 billion) in annual savings by 2014-15, Public Works Minister Rona Ambrose said on Thursday.
She and Treasury Board President Tony Clement told a news conference the government would streamline its information technology spending, cutting 300 data centers to less than 20 and reducing the 3,000 overlapping and uncoordinated networks.
Clement wants departments to identify scenarios to save 5 percent and 10 percent to balance the budget by 2014-15. He said that it would not be painless, but the task was tiny compared with that in the United States.
"The targets that the Congress and the U.S. administration have to deal with over a multiyear period is $4 trillion. Our target is (C)$4 billion," he said.
A background paper said about 80 percent of federal departments use Microsoft Outlook for e-mail, 15 percent use IBM's Lotus Notes and 5 percent Attachmate's Novell GroupWise, and departments use different versions and practices within those categories.
Reporting by Randall Palmer; editing by Janet Guttsman