DUBAI: Saudi Arabia ranks in the top four countries in the world in terms of awareness of UN sustainable development goals (SGDs), according to a new survey published by the World Economic Forum.
More than half (51 percent) the people surveyed in the Kingdom in a global poll said they were familiar with the goals, which aim to tackle issues like climate change, poverty and gender equality.
Indian respondents ranked first, followed by Turkey and China. In the US, only 20 percent said they were familiar with the goals, while the proportion fell to 13 percent in the UK, and only 1 percent in Canada, Italy and France.
Japan achieved 8 percent, and more than half of respondents said they had never heard of the goals.
In Saudi Arabia, the most important global goal was “to end hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition, and promote sustainable agriculture”, with 81 percent of respondents putting that as their primary concern. The least important priority in the Kingdom was to “achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls,” but was still supported by 70 percent of the poll sample.
Globally, the most pressing issue was seen as hunger, clean water and sanitation, followed by good health and well being. The lowest ranked SDGs were gender equality, reducing inequality, and industry, innovation and infrastructure.
The survey, conducted by Ipsos, was unveiled as delegates gathered at the Sustainable Development Impact Summit in New York, to coincide with the UN General Assembly.