IT spending by Australian federal, state and local governments is expected to grow by 2.2 percent in 2013, outranking the world average of -0.1 percent, according to Gartner.
The analyst firm has revised down its forecast for worldwide government spending on hardware, software, IT services and telecommunications, due to ongoing weak economic conditions.
The Australian government sector is forecast to spend $9.5 billion in 2013, with software spending the main driver of growth.
Public sector IT spending is expected to reach almost $10.7 billion by 2017, including spending on software, IT services, telecommunications, devices, data centres and internal IT services (staff costs).
In New Zealand, government IT spending is expected to grow almost 1.4 percent this year to reach more than NZ$1.6 billion. Public sector IT spending is forecast to reach almost $1.8 billion by 2017.
Mobile technologies, IT modernisation and cloud computing are the top three focus areas for 2013, according to Gartner.
“Cloud computing, in particular, continues to increase compared with prior years, driven by economic conditions and a shift from capital expenditure to operational expenditure, as well as potentially more important factors such as faster deployment and reduced risk,” said Christine Arcaris, research director at Gartner.
“Other areas, such as data centre consolidation, are lower on the list than in previous years, perhaps demonstrating that they may have met resistance in a more strategic rollout.”
Public and private cloud-based services adoption continues to grow worldwide, with 30 to 50 percent of government organisations planning for, or having an active IT services contract within the next 12 months.
BYOD programs are also gaining traction within government agencies. Of the organisations surveyed, 52 percent said employees were allowed to bring their own smartphones to work, and 50 percent could use their own laptop, followed by tablets at 38 percent.