Saudi Arabia implements data driven-government to realise digital economy as part Vision 2030

More than 300 senior government officials, Chief Information Officers, IT experts, ICT companies, public policymakers, and technology developers will brainstorm at the two-day Data-Driven Government Conference, KSA, in Riyadh from November 9 to 10, 202


A Staff Reporter

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Reuters File photo
Reuters File photo

Published: Tue 27 Sep 2022, 9:46 PM

Saudi Arabia, which is executing the third phase of the three-stage data-driven government or the National Strategy for Digital Transformation, is currently bringing all the public services under a single digital platform as part of the Smart Government Strategy (2020-2024), that once implemented, will deliver public services through smart phones, on the citizen’s fingertips.

The National Strategy for Digital Transformation that has been aligned with the Saudi Vision 2030 and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UNSDGs), will ensure complete eradication of poverty, gender equality, access to education and information to all Saudi Arabian citizens, that will change the socio-economic landscape of the Kingdom.

The Government has already created the Digital Government Authority and Saudi Data and AI Authority (SDAIA), to spearhead the digital transformation programme. In a few years’ time, Saudi Arabia has introduced more than 30 cloud services, established 169 data centres, more than 175 datasets, successfully implemented 8 digital policies, aligned 130 government departments, registered more than 600,000 establishments with the platform, recording more than 510 million transactions with user base exceeding 22 million people.

All these developments will be elaborated at the two-day Data-Driven Government Conference KSA, that will take place from November 9 to 10, 2022, at the Fairmont Hotel, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, where more than 300 delegates from the public and private sector organisations will listen to more than 30 government officials, leading private sector officials to map the digitalisation progress in the Kingdom.

Saudi Arabia is creating AI-friendly ecosystems and supporting adoption of data analytics solutions and smart city programmes such as NEOM. The contribution of artificial intelligence is expected be 12.4 per cent of the Saudi Arabia’s gross domestic products (GDP) reaching US$135.2 billion in 2030, according to a report by PriceWaterhouseCooper (PwC).

“In the wake of the 4th Industrial Revolution, governments and businesses across the Middle East are beginning to realise the shift globally towards AI and advanced technologies. They are faced with a choice between being a part of the technological disruption or being left behind. When we look at the economic impact for the region, being left behind is not an option. We estimate that the Middle East is expected to accrue 2 percent of the total global benefits of AI in 2030. This is equivalent to US$320 billion,” PwC said in the research report.

“Saudi Arabia holds a clear vision for the future which points towards the development of AI-based technologies. Saudi Vision 2030 and National Transformation Programme identify digital transformation as a key goal to activate economic sectors, to support industries and private sector entities, to advocate for the development of public-private business models and to ultimately reduce the country’s dependence on oil revenues through a diversification of the economy.”

Leila Masinaei, Managing Partner, Great Mind Events Management, and organizer of the Data-Driven Government Conference, says, “Saudi Arabia is fast changing the government’s back office with artificial intelligence and data-driven technologies, some of which we have started to see with the disruption of the Umrah and tourism visa systems – that foreigners could apply and avail without any agency through an app – reducing the bureaucratic red-tape.

“The Data-Driven Government Conference KSA is aimed at bringing the stakeholders under one roof to network, discuss and explore growing opportunities.”

Under Vision 2030, Saudi Arabia has set specific targets to transform into a digital society and economy utilizing data as a national asset to achieve this objective. Data and AI are already disrupting several sectors in the country and have created tremendous achievements especially in disaster management, road safety, and energy consumption management.

Saudi government is one of the main sectors aiming at capitalising on data and its related technologies to innovate its decision making, operations and services. Over the past years, the Kingdom has promoted smart government and the use of open data across all agencies with a framework of guidelines and policies to improve quality of life and drive socio-economic development through utilising advanced data management and analytics.

In light of this, the Data-Driven Government Conference – KSA, will bring together over 300 international and local stakeholders from across the government sectors including ministries, authorities, municipalities, public organisations, and technology developers and consultants to explore latest advanced solutions to establish a secure data management, analytics and utilisation infrastructure.

The distinguished expert panel of speakers will include government decision makers and senior officials from the Kingdom and international industry experts who will discuss the country’s vision of data-driven government and drive the National Strategy for Data and AI under the Saudi Vision 2030.

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