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UAE federal ministry signs major deal with Satyam

Satyam Computers to develop ERP systems and portals, provide consultancy, for UAE ministry

A major UAE federal ministry has signed a deal with Satyam Computers to develop ERP systems and portals, with work due to start this week.

The contract was signed last week in Abu Dhabi, coinciding with the visit of Satyam director and SVP Joseph P Abraham, who heads up the firm's public sector business. He declined to reveal the value of the deal, but said it was in "six figures" in dollars.

"We're going to develop ERP applications for the ministry, and then it goes into portal development for education, police - integrating everything together," said Abraham on the deal, adding that the first phase of the project will last until February 2009, with additional phases following.

He also revealed Satyam is working on projects for the Ajman government, and the Egyptian government in the education sector, as well as a number of contracts in Dubai's public sector. Abraham said Satyam aimed to develop skills and expertise in the Middle East, as well as win projects.

"We're here not just to do projects - we're here to help with the thought processes in the consulting area, and also ensure that we're able to transfer the expertise we've gained over time to this region," he said.

Satyam and other Indian IT firms have been focusing more on the Middle East in recent months, in an attempt to create new revenue streams to offset potential declines in Western markets suffering from the current economic downturn.

This has coincided with an increased willingness among regional enterprises to look at outsourcing as an option to cut costs and increase IT performance. Firms such as Wipro, Infosys, L&T Infotech and Tata Consultancy Services have all recently won significant contracts in the Middle East.

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