x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 18 January 2018

UAEpedia, online services planned

Residents will be able to access government services online using their Emirates ID card as part of Dh150m project.

DUBAI // An encyclopaedia of Emirati culture and a system allowing access to government services using Emirates ID cards are parts of a Dh150 million online project announced yesterday.

UAEpedia will be managed and updated by volunteers, like the website Wikipedia, and will be launched in Arabic with an English version to follow.

It was revealed as part of the Telecommunication Regulatory Authority's (TRA) federal eGovernment strategy and is expected to be completed in 2014.

The scheme to link online government services to Emirates ID cards will mean each resident requires only one password.

"One of the issues at the moment is that there are so many different websites for services that require different passwords and usernames, and that is very difficult for people to keep remembering," said Salem Khamis Al Shair Al Suwaidi, the TRA's deputy director general for information and eGovernment.

Thirty-eight initiatives are to be introduced under the eGovernment strategy, approved in February by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, Vice President of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai.

"The next phase … would involve the Government delivering its services and information through different channels such as the internet, fixed and mobile phones and kiosks, besides the traditional centres," Mr Al Suwaidi said.

A recent UN report said the UAE is on the right track in bringing services to the public via technology.

"The rapid progress of the UAE is a best-practice case that highlights how effective eGovernment can help support development," the UN eGovernment Survey 2012 said. It ranked the UAE first in the GCC for online services and fifth in Asia.