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Reaping the benefits of long-term planning
In 2002, Yemen launched a 10-year e-government programme with a budget of USD 50 to 60 million which aimed to provide better access to services to disadvantaged groups, increasing access to telephone services, and moving to electronic financial transactions. The Internet was introduced in Yemen in 1996 and its usage increased gradually between 2000 and 2010, with a big jump in the number of Internet users from 420,000 in 2010 to 3,691,000 in 2012 representing 14.9 per cent of the total population. Despite big improvement in Yemen’s e-services, the awareness and usage among the population is still relatively low. According to a 2013 study, 29.4 per cent of the citizens were not aware of e-government services, 47.6 per cent were aware but not using them and only 22.3 per cent reported using the services. Awareness and usage is also much higher among men than women. Countries such as Yemen that have recently made a significant investment in e-government, also need to focus on providing ICT-literacy training, as well as to raise awareness of the benefits of e-services, including through social media, to ensure high adoption and maximum benefits of e-governments services. As a result of ongoing improvements, Yemen’s rank increased from 167 to 150 in the global ranking, between 2012 and 2014.