Access Alert: Introducing Saudi Arabia’s E-Government Regulatory Framework

Access Alert: Introducing Saudi Arabia’s E-Government Regulatory Framework

On Sunday 1st of August, the recently established Saudi Digital Government Authority (DGA) issued the Kingdom’s E-Government Regulatory Framework. This is in line with the DGA’s efforts to regulate and improve the provision of e-government services in accordance with the highest international standards and practices. The E-Government Framework will serve as the foundation for all future e-government related regulation. It also comes as the DGA’s first major regulatory announcement since its establishment in March 2021.

The framework includes a set of rules, standards, and user manuals based on eight essential principles, including the “Once Only Principle”, the “Digital by Design”, and the “Mobile First”. In addition, it encompasses the e-government policy, which enables and accelerates the sustainable digital transformation of the government sector and enables the successful implementation of the strategic directions of the digital government. The policy is supported by five sub-policies, including digital governance, whole of government as platforms, digital services lifecycle administration & upskilling, beneficiary-centric, and technology. In turn, each of these sub-policies will include several standards and user guides that support the implementation mechanism and contribute to enhancing the Kingdom’s overall regulatory environment, for instance:

  • The ‘Digital Government Policy’ sets the strategic direction of the overall Framework and lays out the roles and responsibilities of key Government agencies.
  • Supporting resources, data and tools will be provided under the ‘Whole of Government as Platforms Policy’ to guide government agencies through their digital transition. These documents will have an emphasis on Saudi Arabia’s ‘digital identity’ as the cornerstone of the government’s digital transformation.
  • The DGA will define the standards and best practices for the procurement, design and implementation of digital solutions within government under the ‘Digital Services Lifecycle Administration & Upskilling Policy’.
  • To deliver on the ‘Beneficiary-Centric Policy’ and to ensure ease of access and quality of service, the DGA will publish regular surveys and public consultations to ensure citizens actively participate in the implementation of the overall Framework.
  • The ‘Technology Policy’ highlights the governments ambition to continuously improve public sector services, adopt new and modern technologies and contribute to the Kingdom’s growing innovation and creativity environment.

The DGA was established to support government agencies through the development of plans, programs, indexes, and measurements related to the works of digital government and integrated digital government services. Continuing this effort, the DGA has also opened for public consultation the first draft of the framework, the “Digital Government Policy“. The draft is available on the “Istitla’a” platform and is open for comments until the 14th of August 2021. This is a great opportunity to engage the DGA with a view of positively influencing the provision of E-Government services in the Kingdom.

About Access Partnership

Access Partnership is closely monitoring all developments regarding the establishment of the Digital Government Authority. For more information regarding this matter or to get involved in the consultation, please contact Nada Ihab or Hussein Abul-Enein.

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