Public sector efficiency
UNDP enjoys extensive experience in the field of governance through its work in over 177 countries, territories and its global partnerships with governance institutions. UNDP's core services focus on policy advice and technical support; supporting institutions for inclusive economic and social progress; advocacy, communications, and public information; promoting and brokering dialogue; and knowledge networking and sharing of good practices.
Performance at its Best
In this context, the office became heavily involved in several successful governance projects. The office helped the government in developing policies and strategies that help create balanced development and improve public service delivery. UNDP cooperated with the Ministry of Transport in developing Saudi Arabia’s National Transport Strategy which utilized information technologies and the Intelligent Transport System (ITS).
Through the cooperation with the Saudi Food and Drugs Authority (SFDA), which is the leading regulatory for food, drugs and medical device, UNDP assisted it through capacity building and facilitated a mission for the FDA staff to visit and learn from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). On health, UNDP partnered with WHO to produce a comprehensive report on the prevention and control of noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) such as cancer and cardiovascular diseases in the kingdom. The report analyzed NCDs, as they reduce economic output, and discussed potential options in response, outlining details of their relative returns on investment.
The UNDP-supported project to establish and operate Al-Madinah Urban Observatory Network (MUON) comes as one of the successful interventions for the office where it has placed the need for urban and governance indicators high on the planning agenda at the provincial and national levels. Massive work is underway to replicate this successful intervention in other cities such as Riyadh.
Fostering Governance in the Kingdom
Provision of quality data to decision makers, UNDP provided over the years long-term expertise and international best practices in population policies, macroeconomic modeling, and strategic planning. Key performance and urban indicators are integral to secure the efforts of national institutions as they deliver the best service to the citizens. Through the Ministry of Economy and Planning and the partnership with the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for West Asia (ESCWA), a database for key performance indicators was developed based on equations to 75 sectors of the economy. The aim was to monitor the implementation of macroeconomic policies and ensure the accuracy of projections of the country’s resources.
In addition, UNDP has multiple significant projects with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Arriyadh Development Authority, General Authority for Statistics and General Commission for Surveys. Through the partnership with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, UNDP provides advisory services which aims to strengthen the public diplomacy and promote the international representation of Saudi Arabia. On another front, the General Authority for Statistics plays an integral role to have accurate and integrated statistics at the national level. In this respect, UNDP is helping to build their institutional capacity to meet the growing demand and need for accurate data and statistics. Moreover, the CO continues to provide advisory, technical and capacity building services to the General Commission for Surveys and Arriyadh Development Authority to enable both entities to expand their technical work. Other projects included the development of a National Rural Development Strategy with the Ministry of Municipal and Rural Affairs.
All such interventions target fostering public sector efficiency in the Kingdom.
Women play an integral role in the development process. As per the Vision 2030, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia aims to increase women’s participation in the workforce from 22% to 30%. UNDP is currently exploring new initiatives to empower women, strengthen their leadership role and increase their participation at all government sectors and levels.