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ISLAMAAD: Secretary Planning Syed Zafar Ali Shah inaugurated software for the 7th Population and Housing Census, 2022, as Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS) is planning for first ever Digital Population and Housing Census.

The secretary (PD&SI) was briefed about Data Dissemination Dashboards, specially, Price Information Management System (PIMS). The listing and enumeration applications of the 7th Population and Housing Census, 2022 were also displayed to the Secretary.

Shah, addressing on this occasion, emphasized that a good leadership, efficient team and vigilance at operating level can be beneficial for development of any organization.

Chief Statistician Dr Naeemuz Zafar appraised that data collection exercise for pilot census has been started by the PBS field staff for testing the tools, mechanism and field operation. Through this exercise the PBS will be able to point out and rectify all minor and major issues regarding software and field execution plan before undergoing full roll out. He informed that the meeting is conducted to present a brief of two important activities, i.e., Population and Housing Census and National Accounts and relevant members are requested for their presentations.

Muhammad Sarwar Gondal, Member (RM/SS) in his presentation on the 7th Digital Population and Housing Census, informed that with the approval of results of the 6th Population and Housing Census by Council of Common interest (CCI), it was advised to conduct next census immediately by using latest tools and technologies and following world’s best practices. It was also recommended that for wider acceptability of census results, all the stakeholders must be part of census process from planning till finalization and dissemination of results through an effective communication strategy.

A census monitoring committee comprising of important provincial functionaries, researchers and demographers was constituted to monitor all activities of population census. Geo tagging, data collection and listing software, standardized concepts of field force through extensive trainings and real time monitoring are the innovations recommended by the census monitoring committee for reliability, acceptability and reducing time between field operation and results’ announcements.

Syed Ejaz Ali Shah Wasti, Member National Accounts, gave an overview of system of National Accounts, Prices, Macro Economic Statistics, PSDP Projects and compilation of National Accounts. He further discussed National Price Monitoring Committee, its composition and functions. The methodologies of different activities and future milestones were also discussed. UN statistical system, World Bank policies and IMF guidelines were discussed in the scenario of Pakistan. He also threw light on gross value addition regional comparison in rebasing and rebasing interval.

The secretary PD&SI appreciated the efforts of leadership and supporting officers of PBS and showed keen interest in both fields. He said that both the activities, i.e., Population Census and National Accounts are crucial for policymaking and planning. Further, he showed satisfaction over the preparations of PBS for upcoming 7th Population and Housing Census.

He directed to strictly follow the timelines so that as per decision of the CCI next general elections may be conducted on upcoming census. In the end, he said that reliable data leads to correct policy making; therefore, being a data provider the role of the PBS is very important in development of country.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

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