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MCIT Tasks

25 Oct 2017

The Ministry of Communications and Information Technology (MCIT) is responsible for all the means of communication and information technology in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Prior to its establishment as a ministry, it was an agency affiliated with the Ministry of Transport. The former name of the ministry was The Ministry of Telegraph, Post and Telephone.

Since its establishment, many tasks have been assigned to the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology. An organizational structure has been prepared to comply with these tasks. Tasks and responsibilities assigned to the Ministry can be clarified by a review of the royal decisions and decrees as following:
  1. Supervising the activities of ICT sector in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia , ensuring the comprehensiveness of the sector and the spread of its vital services that contribute to the socio-economic development and prosperity of the homeland and citizens.
  2. Setting up general policies and drawing developmental plans and programs for the communications and information technology sector.
  3. Initiating draft laws related to communications and information technology.
  4. Setting up plans for the communications and information technology sector including those related to the comprehensiveness and spread of services as well as the approval and follow-up of the developing process of these services.
  5. Coordinating with government departments and others in issues relevant to ICT sector.
  6. Representing the Kingdom in local, regional and international organizations, conferences and events involving ICT sector.

 
Setting a plan for delivering e-government services and transactions
 
The royal decree No (7/B/33181) dated 10/7/1424 was issued including setting a plan for delivering e-government services and transactions by MCIT.
 
Approving Rules governing the  awarding of IT contracts to private sector based on revenues sharing :
 
The Council of Ministers issued resolution No. 110, dated 5/4/1425, in which it approved the rules that regulate the participation of the private sector in electronic applications based on the principle of shared expected revenue. The decision stipulates that MCIT and CITC should set unified  standards for the systems used by government agencies  regarding needed studies and requirements & conditions of the tender. They should also cooperate with the relevant authorities in analyzing awarding of tenders and following up execution of the projects.
 
Instructions to government agencies to create their own e-Government committees 
 
The Council of Ministers in their decision No. 8189/mb dated 19/6/1426, called on government agencies to set up their respective internal e-Government committees. These committees must be chaired by the first official in these  agencies. They have to oversee implementation of the  plan of   e-government transactions in coordination with the e-government Program.
 
Approving regulations of implementation of e-government transactions in the government agencies
  1. Establishing national e-portal for e-government transactions to facilitate reaching and accessing governmental services and information.
  2. Setting technical frame for the implementation of e-government transactions and updating it regularly to cover all technical specifications and policies that facilitate sharing of information and data between government agencies.
  3. Measuring level of the transformation of government agencies to e-government services and setting relevant indicators. An annual report must be forwarded to the monarch showing the level of transformation.
  4. Setting unified guidelines (documents , specifications and standards)to be followed by government agencies for meeting requirements of e-government transactions as following:
  • Classification of data and information.
  • Mechanism for listing and defining services provided by government agencies with respect to approved models for this purpose and setting it in electronic forms.
  • Documentation of works and administrative measures.
  • Re-designing of works and administrative measures.
  • Publishing of the executive regulations and systems using the internet.
  • Protection of information systems and data.
  1. Coordination with the different government agencies with respect to its plans of transformation to e-government transactions.
  2. Coordination with different government agencies for defining the unified introductory figures for people with natural or legal characteristics and the introductory figures of government services to meet requirements of e-government transactions.

Approving regulations of e-transactions:
 
The Council of Ministers’ decision no. (80) dated 7/3/1428 was issued approving regulations of e-transactions. As per this decision, MCIT has to assume the following:
  1. Set public policies, plans and developmental programs for the e-transactions and signatures and to submit drafting of regulations or any proposed amendments and the coordination with government agencies with respect to implantation of these regulations.
  2. Representing the kingdom in the local , regional and international organizations in all issues relevant to e-transactions and signature.
  3. Establishing the National Center for Digital Certification and oversee the management of digital certification and coordinating in whatever relevant to necessary specifications and standards in this regard besides proposing regulations and policies organizing the work of the center , in addition to boosting usage of digital certifications in the kingdom.
  4. Coordination with foreign countries, which have similar centers for digital certifications for the mutual recognition of the digital certification.
  5. Defining technical specifications the system of certificates issuance, content, form and system of setting e-signature and its certification system.
  6. Defining regulations of issuance, delivery and cancellation of digital certificates. 

 
Approving National Communication and Information Technology Plan (NCITP)
The royal decree no. (7/B/53847) dated 13/11/1424 H was issued stipulating transfer of mission relevant to setting  National Communication and Information Technology Plan (NCITP) to the Ministry of Communication and Information Technology (MCIT). After the plan was completed and submitted the council of ministers’ decision no. (160) dated 11/5/1428 H was issued approving the NCITP. Below are the missions tasked to MCIT in this regard:
  1. Follow up implementation of the plan, evaluate and define obstacles facing different agencies in executing its projects and propose the appropriate solutions and alternatives.
  2. Updating the plan and setting its five-year plan.
  3. Propose whatever necessary to activate and ensure implementation of the plan.
  4. Conduct necessary studies and surveys.
  5. Oversee the transformation to the information society and follow up local indicators in this regard.
  6. Monitoring of the international developments and following up the international indicators in this regard.
  7. Defining global kingdom’s position in the ICT sector.
  8. Forwarding an annual report “transformation to information society” to the monarch.

 
Legislations and Related Regulations
Whereas MCIT is the authorized party to propose drafts of the regulations relevant to ICT sector and submitting them to the council of ministers for approval (as per council of ministers decision no. (133) dated 21/5/1424 H), the ministry gas submitted several proposals in this regard. Noted here that laws and regulations submitted by MCIT are subject to continued revision to be amended in line with latest developments in the sector.
Below are regulations and legislations relevant to ICT sector (in historical order) . Noted here that some of these regulations have been submitted by another parties:
 
• Telecommunications Act
The Telecommunications Act was issued as per the supreme royal decree number (M/12) dated 12/3/1422H (4/6/2001), with the objective of regulating and restructuring the communications sector.

• Establishing government agencies databases  
In his circular No. 7/b/26345, dated 19/12/1422 the Premier directed government agencies to develop databases of their activities. This would help in easing the interoperability amongst government agencies and preparation of their annual reports.
 
• Ensuring transformation from conventional to electronic processing
The Council of Ministers' decision no. 235, issued on October 4, 2004, in accordance with the recommendations of the symposium titled, "Ways of Enhancing Cooperation to Achieve the Objectives of Comprehensive Auditing and Performance Control," which was organized by the General Auditing Bureau, directed government bodies to utilize electronic methods instead of documents and conventional methods and to expedite the use of computers in all financial and accounting operations.
 
•Rules governing awarding of IT contracts to private sector 
The Council of Ministers issued resolution No. 110, dated 5/4/1425, in which it approved the rules that regulate the participation of the private sector in electronic applications based on the principle of shared expected revenue.
 
• Regulations of implementation of e-Government transactions
Council of ministers decision no. (40) dated 27/2/1427 with regard to  approving regulations of e-government transactions.
 
• Anti Cyber Crimes Law
The Council of Ministers issued the decision no. (79) dated 7/3/1428  with  respect to approving  the IT Criminal Law.
 
• E-Transactions Act  
The council of minister issued decision no. (80) dated 7/3/1428 with respect to approving e-transactions law.

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