Saudi Arabia announces complete digital transformation by 2024, introduces Unified Visa Platform

Abdulhadi Almansouri, the Kingdom’s Assistant Minister for Executive Affairs at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, announced the platform during his speech at the Digital Government Forum (DGF) in Riyadh.

On Tuesday, Saudi Arabia announced the launch of a unified visa platform called ‘Saudi Visa,’ aiming to simplify visa application procedures. This initiative is part of the country’s efforts to attract a larger number of tourists in the upcoming years. Additionally, Saudi Arabia revealed its intention to fully digitize its government services by the next year.

Simplified Visa Applications

The newly introduced platform, known as ‘ksavisa.sa’, enables all travellers, including those visiting for Hajj and Umrah, tourists, and work visa applicants, to apply for their visas online. The majority of applications will be processed within three business days. Abdulhadi Almansouri, the Kingdom’s Assistant Minister for Executive Affairs at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, announced the platform during his speech at the Digital Government Forum (DGF) in Riyadh. Almansouri explained that the platform is connected to over 30 public and private entities.

The announcement was made during the second edition of the Digital Government Forum, which commenced on Tuesday in Riyadh. The event witnessed the participation of various government agencies and was attended by ministers, as well as local and international experts.

During the event, Eng. Ahmed Alsuwaiyan, the Governor of the Digital Government Authority, emphasized Saudi Arabia’s leading position in the region in terms of the Government Electronic and Mobile Services Maturity Index (GEMS), as issued by the United Nations ESCWA. He highlighted the remarkable achievements of public agencies in digital services and the billions of dollars saved as a result of this maturity in digital transformation.

Alsuwaiyan highlighted that a total of SAR 5.5 billion ($1.5 billion) in savings had been achieved through the review of over 200 projects and the activation of four framework agreements. Khaled Al-Sunaidi, the Assistant Secretary for Economic and Development Affairs in the General Secretariat of the GCC countries, predicted that the global digital economy would reach approximately $25 trillion within the next five years.

Future Prospects

The introduction of the Saudi Visa platform and the complete digital transformation of government services by 2024 represent significant milestones in Saudi Arabia’s digital journey. These initiatives demonstrate the Kingdom’s dedication to enhancing digital transformation across various sectors, particularly in digital government, and are expected to have a profound impact on the country’s economic and social development.

During the visit, the Education and Training Evaluation Commission unveiled the “Tamayoz” platform, which contributes to providing electronic solutions that streamline school evaluation procedures, offer real-time data for users, and integrate with relevant authorities’ systems. Additionally, the platform will issue electronic school evaluation reports and the results of various evaluations.

Saudi Arabia is actively working towards attracting more foreign visitors and tourists and has implemented numerous initiatives to promote tourism. This includes the introduction of an electronic visit visa system for nationals of 63 countries, as well as eligible residence-visa holders such as GCC residents, residents in the US, the UK, EU countries, and holders of visit visas to the US, UK, and the Schengen area.

The introduction of Saudi Arabia’s unified visa platform marks a significant milestone, offering numerous advantages to Indian travellers. This innovative system streamlines the visa application process, allowing all types of travellers, including those embarking on Hajj and Umrah, tourists, and work visa applicants, to conveniently apply for their visas online.

The majority of applications are anticipated to be processed within three business days, which is particularly advantageous for individuals planning last-minute trips. The government’s plan to fully digitize its services by 2024 is expected to enhance efficiency and user-friendliness when interacting with government agencies. For Indian businesses and entrepreneurs, this visa grants access to Saudi Arabia’s thriving business environment, creating opportunities for collaborations, partnerships, and investments.

Moreover, it enables Indian professionals to participate in industry events, conferences, and meetings in Saudi Arabia, facilitating valuable connections. With Saudi Arabia’s aim to attract more international visitors and tourists, the e-visa system presents new possibilities for Indian travellers to explore the country.

These initiatives exemplify Saudi Arabia’s commitment to advancing digital transformation across various sectors, particularly in digital government, and are poised to have a profound impact on the nation’s economic and social progress. Please note that the information provided is based on the latest available data and is subject to change. For the most accurate and up-to-date information, please refer to official announcements and trusted news sources.