Report: E-government Takes Root in Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia ranks as one of the most active countries to have leveraged e-government services, according to the 2016 Digital Government Survey released by Boston Consulting Group.

Globally, the use of e-government services has taken hold with nations actively identifying areas in which they can improve the digital offerings their government provides. That’s everything from job search portals to ID card applications– or as this United Nations report clarifies: “The use of the Internet in the public sector.” E-government reach extends across the public; business sector; and governmental agencies.

Of the 21 countries surveyed, Saudi Arabia outranked for frequency of usage of e-government services, and third for net satisfaction of improvements made to the offerings provided. Moreover, weekly use of Saudi’s digital government services has increased by 30 percent since 2014.

Room, however, remains for growth.

Based on the survey findings, Saudi citizens least access online services related to housing or obtaining government benefits and subsidies. Still, the country’s e-government progress has led the Kingdom to outrank peers, and unveil progressive approaches to reaching its citizens via the online space.

Virtual Vision: E-government Signals One Part of a Growing IT Sector

E-government enables an unprecedented means to share information, and inspire transparency across all levels of society. Moreover, it emboldens Saudi Arabia’s fast-growing IT sector.

In 2016, the Saudi telecommunications and IT market—the largest in the Middle East—grew by 8 percent to reach $35 billion. In 2015, the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology recorded approximately 22 million Internet users in the Kingdom, with mobile subscriptions numbering some 53 million.

Under Vision 2030, Saudi Arabia aims to increase private sector contributions from 40 percent to 65 percent of the national GDP, all while ensuring that 90 percent of Saudi homes have access to high-speed broadband coverage. The IT sector, in particular, is slated to make up 2.24 percent of the nation’s non-oil GDP.

Read more at Technical Review Middle East.