The Ministry of Environment and Water, with LINK Development, Launches Mobile Government Framework and Achieves 100% electronic serviceWednesday, Oct 30, 2013
(Dubai- 20 October, 2013) – The Ministry of Environment & Water has unveiled at Gitex its mobile government (m-gov) framework, in response to the diretions of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, UAE Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, who called on all government entities to deliver their services to the public through mobile phones and devices, setting the stage for the transformation from eGovernment to mGovernment.
His Excellency Dr. Rashid Ahmed Mohammed Bin Fahad, Minister of Environment & Water, said: “The early e-transformation of the ministry allowed us to answer the call of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed within a record time. With today’s launch of our m-gov initiative, 100 per cent of the ministry’s services are now offered electronically.”
This is the highest rating a government entity can receive from the UAE Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA). Before implementing the current framework, the ministry had a 36% rating from TRA. It provides all the 112 services offered by the ministry to its customers through mobile devices and forms yet another block in the transformation and modernisation of the public sector in the UAE, which was ranked at the 19th as per the Global Competitiveness Index of the “World Economic Form” , Global Competitiveness Report 2013-2014.
His Highness Sheikh Mohammed had launched the m-gov initiative in May calling on all government entities to upgrade public online and mobile services to more efficient and cost and time-effective services: “I want UAE Government services to be delivered to the public through mobile phones.”
Amin Azab, Managing Director of LINK Development, an OTVentures company and the developer of the ministry’s m-gov framework, said: “The website of the ministry is now mobile-compliant and all applications are inter-operable across various operating systems and devices. This will allow the ministry’s customers to access all the services offered by the various departments on any of their devices easily anytime, anywhere.”
The Ministry of Environment and Water has been one of the first adopters of e-government initiative launched by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed, in order to offer better services with this added convenience and flexibility. This is now been extended to m-gov. The UAE has one of the highest mobile phone penetrations in the world, which stands at 170%.
Ms Aisha Al Abdouli, acting undersecretary for environmental affairs at the ministry said: “The Ministry of Environment & Water is proud to launch its M-Government initiative for easier interaction with the public. We highly appreciate our partnership with LINK Development, providing a comprehensive e-government framework which aligns with the Ministry’s vision and strategic plans to enhance our provided services, and adopt the M- government implementation of all rendered transactions and services. Public satisfaction increased thanks to the M-government solution which promotes eco-friendly notions by supporting a mobile, dynamic and paper-less work environment.”
The new initiative enables a larger number of people to have access to the ministry’s services in a timely manner using their mobile devices, than would be possible using wired internet only. The initiative will help reduce time, improve efficiency, transparency and quality of service.
Shayma Mohamed Al Redha, Director of Smart Government Project at the Ministry of Environment and Water added: “Before, The Ministry of Environment and Water addressed
public needs in a various ways. With LINK Development, our IT partner, we were able to implement a more integrated platform to host all provided services, resulting in the increase of the Ministry’s electronic readiness to 100% (according to TRA). The M-government solved a lot of issues the ministry was facing, transforming all daily manual work of employees to electronic workflows through internet/intranet integrated E-services platform.”
Through this platform, the public will be able to get government services through multiple channels like: Smart Phones, SMS, the GSM USSD protocol, Internet, Kiosks, Interactive Voice Response (IVR), and others.
The Ministry offers all its services to citizens 24*7, without being restricted to certain working hours. It has also increased the services offered through online and mobile devices by 64%, extending them to all its 112 services, eliminated the average waiting time needed to submit a new request, as well as the need to visit the ministry to conduct their transaction. It has also slashed the average service time by half and increased the number of channels through which customers can communicate with the ministry, and vice versa, from one to five. As importantly for the Ministry of Environment and Water, it has reduced the average number of printed papers per request from ten to zero, creating a more eco-friendly business environment.