E-government services will play an important role in supporting Jordan’s mid-term development strategy. The Jordan Economic Growth Plan (JEGP) 2018-22 targets 12% annual growth in the ICT sector during the period. Planned improvements to the kingdom’s business environment entail launching new online business licensing and other services, while efforts to crack down on corruption and boost government revenue inflows will depend on expansion of e-government services, particularly in the area of online payment platforms.
PLANS: Jordan’s e-government initiatives are outlined in several policy documents, including the National ICT Strategy of the Ministry of Information and Communications Technology (MICT), spanning 2013-17 and an earlier e-government strategy running from 2014 to 2016. Furthermore, the REACH2025 national digitisation strategy, launched in 2016 and running until 2025, which highlights e-government service delivery as a critical pillar for the kingdom’s ongoing digital transformation (see overview). Published in April 2013, the e-government strategy reported that online government offerings have expanded significantly, from just 15 online services in 2003, to 30 in 2006 and 55 in 2009. The e-government strategy projected 96 services would be available online in 2016, but the kingdom has already exceeded these targets, and in March 2017 the MICT stated that 125 services had been automated.
The MICT also reports that the e-Government Steering Committee was launched in 2016, comprising six ministers and its own secretary-general, followed by the CIO Council, which is made up of IT directors from a variety of government ministries. Stakeholders are currently in the process of studying e-business, e-citizen and e-government value chains to develop the best service-delivery models, using the “Re-DO” methodology, which emphasises re-engineering, digitising and outsourcing service delivery. Various ministries have also been increasingly active in launching new services aimed at reducing red tape and operational costs at the Ministry of Labour (MoL), as well as the transportation and education sectors.
In May 2017 the MoL and MICT jointly announced the launch of new e-permits, e-inspection and e-employment systems. The first, the e-permits system will allow the state to connect to entities involved in securing foreign work permits, according to the MICT, as well as offering an online platform for fee payment. The e-inspection system will be built to International Labour Organisation standards, with the aim of automating the labour inspection process, while the e-employment system will facilitate connection between businesses and training service providers as well as donor institutions.
Also in May 2017 the MICT and Public Security Department (PSD) signed a memorandum of understanding to facilitate e-service offerings for the PSD’s drivers and vehicles licensing department. Following registration, citizens will be able to inquire about the status of their vehicle’s licensing online.
In the same month the Land Transport Regulatory Commission launched an e-system project which will clarify and enforce the rights of various parties involved in transporting goods, as well as enhance data privacy for shipments, with Hussein Al Souob, the then-minister of transport, telling local media the project will contribute to increasing compatibility between international and local laws, in turn reducing the time and cost of border compliance (see Transport chapter).
The education sector is also poised to benefit from new e-government services. In October 2017 the Ministry of Education announced the completion of a nationwide project to link 2652 of Jordan’s state schools and the ministry on an integrated IT network, which will also connect 43 directorates and 69 administrative buildings (see overview). The Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research has also launched new e-systems aimed at increasing the number of international students studying at the kingdom’s private universities (see Education chapter).
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