Big gap in Asian govt IT spend

New research hints at the public sector's growing IT expenditure but also shows a wide disparity in per capita spending across the region.

Public sector spending in the Asia-Pacific region, excluding Japan, will increase at a compound annual growth rate of 9.5 percent from US$17.3 billion in 2005 to US$25 billion by 2009, according to a new study from Springboard Research.

The latest findings, however, show a "staggering" difference in public sector IT spending per capita across the region, noted Dane Anderson, research vice president at Springboard Research, in a statement on Tuesday.

Pacific countries New Zealand and Australia took the top two spots, with per capita government spending at US$198.78 and US193.82, respectively. Singapore, in third place, was the best performing Asian nation, with a per capita spending of US$152.89.

Indonesia occupied the bottom spot, with a per capita spending of US$1.10, while India was second lowest in per capita spending, at US$1.29.

Public sector spending in Asia-Pacific

Country
Per capita IT spend (US$)
New Zealand
198.78
Australia
193.82
Singapore
152.89
Hong Kong
67.22
Korea
52.96
Taiwan
45.22
Malaysia
21.92
Thailand
7.41
China
3.67
The Philippines
2.94
India
1.29
Indonesia
1.10

Source: Springboard Research

According to Jonathan Silber, senior market analyst for public sector at Springboard Research, three key tiers exist in the results of per-capita public sector IT spending in the region. The top two tiers are forecasted to post "relatively stable growth rates" of 4 percent to 5 percent, he noted.

"We expect the top tier countries like New Zealand, Australia and Singapore to grow slightly faster than the tier-two countries like Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Korea, but we anticipate the highest growth will come from the developing countries India, China, the Philippines, Indonesia, and Thailand," said Silber.

Countries in the highest growth group are likely to post annual growth rates of between 11 percent and 19 percent, Silber added. India's public sector IT expenditure is expected to grow at a CAGR of 19.6 percent, while China's CAGR is forecast at 14.6 percent, making them the fastest growing among the Asian pack.

Last month, research analyst IDC also affirmed China and India as the top drivers of growth in public sector IT spend. The company projected government expenditure in this area to hit US$31.7 billion by 2010.

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