Electronic services transactions increase by 257% to $530 million in Bahrain

MANAMA: Government revenue from e-services increased nearly fourfold (257%) in the first half of this year to over BD 200 million compared to the same period last year, suggesting a growing adoption of online access.

Announcing the results in its H1-2021 report, the Information & eGovernment Authority (iGA) said yesterday that it reflected the role e-services play in meeting the demands of individuals, government entities and business owners, especially during the pandemic, and their steady progress towards realizing the kingdom’s digital transformation aspirations.

The number of financial transactions conducted through various electronic channels in the first half of 2021 exceeded 1.6 million, double the number recorded during the same period last year, indicating a high level of confidence in the quality of services provided .

Advanced technologies deployed in carrying out these tasks have helped improve the quality of government performance.

iGA Acting Director General Dr Zakareya Al Khajah said digital transformation and information and communication technology (ICT) initiatives across all government services are given highest priority management, noting the guidance of the Supreme ICT Committee chaired by the Deputy Prime Minister. Sheikh Mohammed bin Mubarak Al Khalifa.

He also underlined the support of the Minister of Interior, General Shaikh Rashid bin Abdulla Al Khalifa, to develop and continue to offer electronic services to the public despite the circumstances imposed by the coronavirus pandemic.

Congratulating other government entities for their cooperation, which has accelerated the plans, Dr. Al Khajah said iGA ​​continues its efforts towards full digitalization of government offerings, creating more transparency and providing the best quality of services. in line.

He also thanked the ICT team members of various public and private organizations for their “high degree of professionalism and adaptability to new technologies”.

The report revealed other significant results in the first half of 2021, including that more than 1.1 million financial transactions were made through the national portal, bahrain.bh, an increase of 76% compared to the same period of last year.

The amount generated through the online service portal was approximately BD 188 million, more than double the amount in the first half of 2020.

The main electronic payment services used via the portal were: the electricity deposit payment service; Covid-19 testing fees; Ministry of Justice, Islamic Affairs and Endowments – Unified Payment; private notary; and passport renewals.

The most used services included applying for employment for the Civil Service Bureau, issuing copies of student certificates, and student exam results.

The report also showed an increase in transactions made through smart device apps, which topped 390,000, a 92% jump from the first half of 2020.

The amount generated by these apps was more than BD 20 million, a 145% year-on-year increase.

BeAware Bahrain was the most frequently used app, highlighting its importance in providing information to users during the pandemic, including the latest updates on precautions to take in public, as well as its usefulness in performing transactions such as Payment of PCR Covid-19 test fee.

Among the most used applications is also Sehati, which offers an appointment booking service in health centers; Islamiyat, because of its popular Fa’el Khair donation collection service; and the national suggestions and complaints app, Tawasul.

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