IBM will be working with the Australian government in a $740m ($1B AUD) technology partnership for the next 5 years. The agreement includes IBM providing automation and blockchain technologies to various government sectors, including defense, home affairs, and protecting citizens’ data. With the new deal, the Australian government predicts a total of near $100m AUD worth of savings to its citizens.
In an interview with Bloomberg, IBM’s Asia Pacific head, Harriet Green states the “youth of technology” and the employment of Australians to support and help with implementation would be hallmark of success for the new partnership. The main focus of the Australian government utilizing new technologies is security that AI and blockchain technology can bring. The partnership is described by Green as putting the Australian government in the top 3 when it comes to digital governments of the world.
The new partnership comes just 2 years after the Australian government and IBM’s last deal where IBM was compensated $30m to handle the national census. The deal ended up ‘bungled’ as the census survey was hit by 4 DDos attacks that temporarily shut down the project, an act that Prime Minister Turnbull described as a failure on IBM’s behalf. All though the previous partnership went awry, Green states the importance of the Australian citizen’s security to the government as well as IBM’s investments, research, development, and innovation will allow for another go at working for a successful outcome.