The kingdom was the only Mid-Eastern country to be honoured by the UN in the category of Outstanding Progress in e-Government among the Top 20, along with other countries, including Japan and Spain.
The winners of the 2014 UN E-Government Survey Special Awards were honoured for their commitment to transforming public administration into an instrument for sustainable development, and the giant leaps they had made regarding the updating of their portals, launching e-projects and linking government bodies electronically.
Al Khaja expressed the kingdom's pride in the award, describing the honouring as a new step that adds to e-Government Authority's innumerable achievements at the international level, which, he said, reflected Bahrain's ability to carry on competition at the global arena, as well as the UN confidence in its potentials.
He credited the kingdom's leadership for the new achievements, noting that it has spared no effort to support the e-Government Authority.
In this regard, he paid special tribute to the Deputy Premier and Chairman of the High Information and Communication Technology Committee and the panel members for their efforts.
The 2014 United Nations E-Government Survey Special Awards were awarded in five categories. They were the Highest Global e-Government Ranking, Outstanding Progress in e-Government among the Top 20, Highest Regional e-Government Ranking, Global e-Participation Ranking and Highest e-Government Ranking in Special Country Groups.
The ceremony was held on the sidelines of the 2014 United Nations Global e-Government Forum (GeGF), held recently in Astana, Kazakhstan under the theme ‘Smart Governance for Sustainable Development: New Opportunities for Partnership in a Networked Society’, in the presence of around 700 participants from all corners of the world.
It was organised by the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UN DESA)’s Division for Public Administration and Development Management (DPADM) in partnership with the Agency for Communication and Information of Kazakhstan.
It addressed emerging issues, such as smart governance, networked society, open government, open data and social media.
It aimed to raise the participants’ awareness of new e-government trends and issues, including cutting-edge technologies and innovative practices to address complex governance challenges.
During the ministerial meeting, held on the sidelines of the forum, Dr. Zakaria Al Khaja shed light on Bahrain's e-Government Strategy and highlighted its national projects, with a core focus on the citizens ‘needs and engagement in setting policies and using multiple delivery channels of public services. He cited mainly the National Suggestions and Complaints System (Tawasul), the Integrated Workflow Management System "Zajel" and the National Authentication Framework (NAF) project (known as e-Key system).