The government sector in the Middle East and Africa will spend $17,7-billion on IT products and services in 2013, an increase of 2,3% over 2012 revenue of $17,3-billion, according to Gartner. 
This forecast includes internal IT (including personnel), hardware, software, external IT services and telecommunications. Government comprises local and regional government and national and international government.
Telecommunications, which includes telecommunications and networking equipment and services, will remain the largest overall spending category throughout the forecast period within the government sector. It is expected to grow 4,54% in 2013 to reach $9,5-billion in 2013, up from $9,1-billion in 2012 – led by growth in mobile devices and enterprise communication equipment.
The software market will achieve the next highest growth rate among the spending categories – forecast to be 4,53% in 2013 to reach $1,4-billion in 2013, led by growth in the enterprise application software (which includes enterprise resource planning, office suites and content, communications and collaboration amongst others).
The software segment includes enterprise application software, infrastructure software and vertical specific software.
”UAE, Qatar and Bahrain lead the Gulf Co-operation Council’s (GCC) adoption of e-government programmes and will now focus efforts to electronically link up departments and offer a single interface point for citizens to connect with government agencies,” says Anurag Gupta, research director at Gartner.
“Saudi Arabia is the largest GCC member, and its second e-government action plan will leverage public private partnership contracts and framework agreements,” Gupta says.
“However, the availability of skilled and trained resources will be critical to drive success of various e-government initiatives.
“The South African government’s planned expansion of the recently piloted Smart ID card initiative in 2013 and Turkish government plans to provide all government services electronically by the year 2019 will create new opportunities for technology and service providers in the fast growing Middle East and Africa region.”