Stock - Saudi economy / Riyadh skyline
Riyadh skyline. Image Credit: Bloomberg

Dubai: The 2022 National Transformation Programme (NTP) report has revealed that over 6,000 government services in Saudi Arabia are now available digitally, constituting 97 per cent of all government services, Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported.

The NTP has focused on creating a sustainable digital transformation environment, integrating Fourth Industrial Revolution technologies, and expanding e-government services across justice, medical, education, and other sectors.

To drive digital transformation, the NTP has invested in technologies, promoted digital entrepreneurship, spread digital awareness, and trained highly qualified national cadres. As a result, the Kingdom has made significant strides in global digital benchmarks.

In the United Nations e-Government Development Index for 2022, Saudi Arabia ranked 31st worldwide and first in the Middle East and North Africa region for the availability and development of digital government services in the Government Electronic and Mobile Services Maturity Index (GEMS).

Saudi Arabia was also the most improved country in digital government according to the Japanese Waseda University Index for 2021, jumping 23 places from the previous year. The NTP’s efforts have significantly advanced the Kingdom’s communications infrastructure, with mobile internet speeds reaching 181.24 Mbps and fixed internet speeds at 109.83 Mbps. Additionally, 4G wireless broadband coverage has exceeded 98 per cent, and 5G services are now available in 84 governorates across the country.

In the European Centre for Digital Competitiveness’ report on Competitiveness Progress 2021, Saudi Arabia ranked second among G20 countries, advancing eight positions globally.

The NTP has introduced and developed policies and legislation supporting digital transformation, such as the personal data protection system, digital government policy, and communications and information technology system approved in 2022.

These measures have solidified the Kingdom’s position as the fastest-growing and largest digital economy in the Middle East and North Africa, attracting significant investment in the digital sector.