KSA’s statistics authority launches data-collection phase of Saudi Census 2022

Faisal bin Fadil Al-ibrahim, the Saudi minister of economy and planning, during the event in Riyadh. (Photo/ Mohammed Ayoub)
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Faisal bin Fadil Al-ibrahim, the Saudi minister of economy and planning, during the event in Riyadh. (Photo/ Mohammed Ayoub)
KSA’s statistics authority launches data-collection phase of Saudi Census 2022
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Faisal bin Fadil Al-ibrahim, the Saudi minister of economy and planning, during the event in Riyadh. (Photo/ Mohammed Ayoub)
KSA’s statistics authority launches data-collection phase of Saudi Census 2022
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(Photo/ Mohammed Ayoub)
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Updated 11 May 2022

KSA’s statistics authority launches data-collection phase of Saudi Census 2022

Faisal bin Fadil Al-ibrahim, the Saudi minister of economy and planning, during the event in Riyadh. (Photo/ Mohammed Ayoub)
  • The census seeks to provide detailed information about the population of the Kingdom, including ages, nationalities and the distribution of income across regions, and the health status of people living in cities compared with those in rural areas

RIYADH: The General Authority for Statistics has launched the enumeration and data-collection phase of the Kingdom’s fifth national census, the results of which will be published before the end of this year.

“We needed to increase the quality of our database, and for this census we have implemented the most advanced technologies to achieve this,” Faisal Al-Ibrahim, the Saudi minister of economy and planning, said during the official launch in Riyadh on Tuesday.

“We have launched the ‘self-enumeration’ method of gathering data that will help us achieve an accurate and comprehensive database for the census.”

During this phase of the census process, which began on May 10 and will continue for 35 days, detailed statistical data about the population will be collected. The Saudi Census 2022 is fully digital and citizens and residents will submit their details by completing an online census form that is available at the GASTAT web portal or through a link that will be sent via text message to heads of households. This will greatly reduce the need for field researchers to visit households to collect the data.

In addition, self-enumeration kiosks will be provided in 29 shopping centers across the Kingdom, at which the census questionnaire can be completed with help from the authority’s staff. In cases where there is a lack of response or more data is needed, more than 30,000 field enumerators are on standby to visit people’s homes and collect the required information.

“Data and statistics drive evidence-based decisions,” Konrad Pesendorfer, GASTAT’s president, said during the launch.

“Data integration from multiple sources is the new business model for data quality, and access to data is crucial for research and development. That is why we launched a statistical database. The census of 2022 is not a traditional census.”

The census seeks to provide detailed information about the population of the Kingdom, including ages, nationalities and the distribution of income across regions, and the health status of people living in cities compared with those in rural areas.

The first phase of census process, called “address canvassing,” began in January when more than 14,000 field workers began to catalog all inhabited and uninhabited homes within the Kingdom and allocate to them smart census stickers. Each of these stickers includes a unique QR code linking the property with its head of household.





GASTAT finalized its plans for the census in September last year, after carrying out tests in seven regions across the Kingdom of the questionnaire and the operational tools it uses. The self-enumeration process, the method for filling out the questionnaire online, and the technical systems used during the enumeration phase were all tested and evaluated.

The Saudi Census is conducted every 10 years by GASTAT, and this one will be vitally important for the planning and policies required to achieve the goals of the nation’s Vision 2030 development and diversification plan, Al-Ibrahim said.

More than 25 government agencies are involved in the census operation, including the ministries of interior, health and education, and the Saudi Authority for Data and Artificial Intelligence.

“What we prepared is not just a snapshot of 2022,” Pesendorfer said. “The objective is to continuously update our database, year after year. The database will be linked with administrative data.

“High-quality statistics can only be produced with many stakeholders,” he added as he thanked all those who have collaborated on the process.

GASTAT has stressed its commitment to maintaining the highest standards of privacy, confidentiality and the protection of personal information included in the census. Such information will not be disclosed to any third parties, it added.

The last general population and housing census in the Kingdom prior to this year’s took place in 2010, when the total population was determined to be 27,136,977.

Most countries conduct a comprehensive census every 10 years to obtain up-to-date, accurate and detailed data about the population, including its geographical distribution and social and economic characteristics.

Accurate statistical data of this kind enables officials, planners and politicians to allocate budgets more effectively and develop comprehensive strategies that can help keep pace with urban development. It also aids efforts to plan for future needs based on expected population growth, contribute to development plans and provide vital public services such as education, healthcare and transportation.

 


Saudi-US defense delegations review ties, discuss future cooperation

Saudi-US defense delegations review ties, discuss future cooperation
Updated 19 May 2022

Saudi-US defense delegations review ties, discuss future cooperation

Saudi-US defense delegations review ties, discuss future cooperation
  • Deputy Defense Minister Prince Khalid says the meeting was organized upon Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s directives

RIYADH: Prince Khalid bin Salman, Saudi Arabia’s deputy minister of defense, on Wednesday met the US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin in Washington, the Saudi Press Agency reported.

The pair reviewed the Saudi-US partnership, and ongoing and future strategic military and defense cooperation between the Kingdom and US.

Prince Khalid expressed Saudi Arabia’s appreciation for the close cooperation between the two countries' defense bodies to achieve the two sides’ common interests and enhance security and peace regionally and internationally.

He also said that the meeting was organized based on Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s directives.

Prince Khalid and US Undersecretary of Defense for Policy Colin Kahl, then, co-headed the Saudi-US joint strategic planning committee meeting.

(SPA)

The meeting discussed regional and international developments, and a number of issues on defending common interests and global security and stability.

The meeting was attended by Gen. Fayyadh bin Hamed Al-Ruwaili, Saudi Chief of General Staff, and other Saudi and US senior officials.


Kahila horse championship to kick off May 25 in Saudi Arabia

Kahila horse championship to kick off May 25 in Saudi Arabia
Updated 18 May 2022

Kahila horse championship to kick off May 25 in Saudi Arabia

Kahila horse championship to kick off May 25 in Saudi Arabia
  • The event will highlight the significance of the ancient sport and the Kingdom’s efforts to advance it through local and international forums

RIYADH: An international event to celebrate the history of purebred Arabian horses is set to get underway in Saudi Arabia.

Prince Bandar bin Khalid Al-Faisal, chairman of the Equestrian Authority and the Horse Racing Club, will on May 25 patronize the launch of the second edition of the five day Kahila championship meeting.

Organized by the King Abdulaziz center for purebred Arabian horses, the event will be staged at the Riyadh Front Exhibition and Convention Center and will highlight the significance of the ancient sport and the Kingdom’s efforts to advance it through local and international forums.


73 held after Saudi patrols intercept illicit drug hauls

73 held after Saudi patrols intercept illicit drug hauls
Updated 18 May 2022

73 held after Saudi patrols intercept illicit drug hauls

73 held after Saudi patrols intercept illicit drug hauls
  • The authorities thwarted attempts to smuggle 682 kilograms of hashish, 62.3 tons of khat and 194,300 amphetamine tablets

RIYADH: Saudi authorities arrested 73 people after border patrols foiled massive drug smuggling attempts in several regions of the Kingdom.

Col. Misfir Al-Qarini, spokesman for the General Directorate of Border Guard, said that land patrols in the Jazan, Najran, Asir and Tabuk regions thwarted attempts to smuggle 682 kilograms of hashish, 62.3 tons of khat and 194,300 amphetamine tablets.

The seized drugs were handed over to authorities and legal steps taken against those detained, he added.

Among the alleged violators were 20 Saudi citizens, 26 Ethiopians, 23 Yemenis, two Pakistanis, one Sudanese and one Eritrean. 


Taif Rose Festival is an intense visual and olfactory delight

Taif Rose Festival is an intense visual and olfactory delight
Updated 18 May 2022

Taif Rose Festival is an intense visual and olfactory delight

Taif Rose Festival is an intense visual and olfactory delight
  • The festival has 13 sections featuring 50 live performances and folkloric dances from across the Kingdom

 

JEDDAH: At this time every year the mountainous city of Taif is adorned with the hues of bright pink roses that produce some of the world’s most alluring perfumes and oils.

The Taif Rose Festival is the modern iteration of a tradition of cultivation and harvesting that has taken place in this region over the past nine centuries.

It was launched on May 6 at Al-Rudaf Park in the southern part of the city, and is open from 4 p.m. to 12 midnight.

The Ministry of Culture, in cooperation with Taif Municipality and under the patronage of Makkah Gov. Prince Khaled Al-Faisal, have organized the festival for two years in a row.

However, it has been running for the past 17 years, Arab News was told by Ahmad Al-Joaid, a tour guide from Taif who has been operating for 15 years in the field.

Al-Joaid said: “A number of new activities are added to the festival every year. Al-Rudaf Park is an area of over half-a-million square meters … a theater has also been created for the festival … Concerts (are) also a new addition.”

The ministry tweeted on its account @MoC_Engage: “Between the beauty of roses and the creativity of art, we welcome you to Taif roses festival.”

The festival has 13 sections featuring 50 live performances and folkloric dances from across the Kingdom in the park, and music shows by male and female artists.

The organizers have set up a workshop aimed at young people that provides information on how to become involved in the perfume-making industry.

There is also an exhibition titled “Claude Monet,” named after the French painter and founder of impressionism, who portrayed nature with such startling creativity. Several of Monet’s renditions are on display.

The festival also provides an opportunity for aspiring Saudi artists to display their paintings at “Cultural Street,” and drawings and other artwork at “Drawing Exhibit.” 

Many families have set up booths to sell byproducts of Taif’s produce such as rose water, perfumes, deodorants, soaps, body and skincare products, food and sweets.

The festival is also a great place for social media enthusiasts because it has several picturesque backdrops for photographs such as the Rose Dome, which contains a giant painting made of natural roses, the largest basket of the flowers in the city, and models and gates decorated with the produce.

Visitors can also view and listen to various rare birds.

Taif roses have historic, economic and religious importance. The oil is used to perfume the walls of the Kaaba, which is also washed twice annually with its scented water.

The region has more than 2,000 flower farms producing over 200 million roses every season.

Residents of Makkah and Jeddah visit Taif regularly in summer. “People can do plenty of things in Taif in addition to visiting the festival during their one-day visit …  (including) museums, local markets, rose factories in Al-Shafa and Al-Hada, the cable car, strawberry farm, zoo, and historical castles,” the tour guide said.


Who’s Who: Majed Al-Sulami, humanitarian and development affairs chief at KSA’s UN mission in Geneva

Who’s Who: Majed Al-Sulami, humanitarian and development affairs chief at KSA’s UN mission in Geneva
Updated 19 May 2022

Who’s Who: Majed Al-Sulami, humanitarian and development affairs chief at KSA’s UN mission in Geneva

Who’s Who: Majed Al-Sulami, humanitarian and development affairs chief at KSA’s UN mission in Geneva

Majed Al-Sulami is a diplomat at the permanent mission of Saudi Arabia to the UN, where he is head of the humanitarian and development affairs department in Geneva.

His responsibilities are in the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, UN High Commissioner for Refugees, International Organization for Migration, International Committee of the Red Cross, UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction, Food and Agriculture Organization, World Food Programme, Médecins Sans Frontières (Doctors Without Borders) and humanitarian assistance in areas affected by conflicts, armed disputes and natural disasters.

Al-Sulami attained his bachelor’s degree in English literature from King Abdulaziz University in Jeddah. He also received a master’s degree in international relations and diplomacy affairs from the University of Ghana, and another master’s degree in business administration for executives from Cardiff Metropolitan University, UK.

Al-Sulami also served as the chargé d’affaires at the Saudi Embassy in Ghana, and the deputy head and head of the consular section between September 2011 and 2013.

He was also the deputy head of the media section at the Saudi Embassy in London between September 2013 and 2017.

Al-Sulami also served as director of the specialized meetings at the permanent mission of Saudi Arabia to the Organization of Islamic Cooperation between September 2017 and 2020.

His participation included the 47th and 48th sessions of the OIC’s permanent finance committee, the 13th and 14th sessions of the OIC Independent Permanent Human Rights Commission and the workshop held by the OIC’s commission with the UN.

Al-Sulami was a political committee member for preparatory meetings and foreign ministers’ meetings and the OIC conference held in Makkah in 2019.