Four forms consisting of 91 questions developed for population census — Nurbolat Aidapkelov

The population census will start Sep.1, 2021, in Kazakhstan. Head of the Bureau of National Statistics of the Agency for Strategic Planning and Reforms of the Republic of Kazakhstan Nurbolat Aidapkelov said this at the government session chaired by Prime Minister Askar Mamin.

According to him, at the moment all the preparatory measures have been taken. In preparation for the main population census, a pilot census was carried out. Methodological tools and normative legal acts were developed and approved.

“From June 1 to 30, 2021, field census work was carried out to clarify the addresses of residential and non-residential premises, as well as the actual number of the population living in them. Mass explanatory work is being carried out,” Aidapkelov noted.

The census will be conducted in two ways:

  • from Sep. 1 to Oct. 15, an Internet survey on the specialized site sanaq.gov.kz;
  • from Oct. 1 to Oct. 30, a traditional continuous survey by interviewers using electronic tablets.

“Additionally, the possibility of passing the census will be provided through the domestic mobile application Aitu Messenger. In addition, on the main page of the e-government website egov.kz there is a link to sanaq.gov.kz, following which you can fill in the questionnaire online,” he said.

Also, respondents can take a census in specially organized instructor sites, which will be located in public service centers, akimats, post offices, schools and shopping centers. In addition, a walk-through of 10% of respondents will be conducted to check the coverage and accuracy of the data.

As the Head of the Bureau of National Statistics reported, the census will concern permanent residents, citizens of Kazakhstan, foreigners and stateless persons. Also, citizens who went abroad in connection with the performance of their official duties, students enrolled in the Bolashak program and under the student exchange program, tourists who went abroad for rest, treatment, and visits will be rewritten. The census will also cover migrants who have arrived in the Republic of Kazakhstan for permanent residence or seek asylum, as well as foreigners who have been in the country for less than 12 months.

To conduct the population census, 4 census forms have been developed, consisting of 91 questions. Households will answer questions about the number of residents, housing conditions. Each household member will answer the ‘Individual’ questionnaire, and foreigners will fill out a questionnaire form for those temporarily in the country.

New questions on population migration, on disability, which were recommended by the Washington Group on Disability Statistics of the United Nations have been included. Also questions about the impact of the pandemic on income, coronavirus infection and vaccinations have been included. Questions about employment, language skills, marriage and fertility have been expanded.

During the period of the population census, encrypted data will be transferred to the central census server:

1. if there is a network, directly from the tablet to the server;

2. with poor coverage by the Cellular Network, in offline mode through the ETS GO, to which the MIOs are connected;

3. It is also possible to send data via IP VPN, to which all territorial statistical offices are connected.

All encrypted information received from citizens during the census is transmitted to the central server of the Bureau of National Statistics through secure communication channels.

As part of ensuring the smooth operation of the online census, a backup site has been organized.

At the time of the census, 32,313 people will be temporarily employed throughout the country. Of these, 6,178 people were involved in the first stage of the census, which took place from June 1 to 30, 2021. The main population census will involve 26,135 people as part of the census personnel. The recruitment of interviewers in the regions will be carried out by a specially formed commission. Vaccinated interviewers will be accepted, for whom personal protective equipment has been fully purchased.

The required amount of funding for the national population census for 2018-2023 is 9.1 billion tenge, of which 3.5 billion tenge have been mastered so far.

According to the media plan for information support of the census, from May 17, 2021, mass explanatory work has begun among the population through the media. A press center has been opened at the Bureau of National Statistics. An official representative of the 2021 National Population Census has been appointed, and press secretaries of the BNS departments have been appointed.

At the moment, 17,387 materials and publications have been posted in the republican, regional media and popular social networks. During the period of the census in the online mode, the Call-center 1446 is provided for stationary telephone numbers and mobile numbers 88000800878.

All problematic issues were brought up and considered at the meetings of the special commission for the national census, headed by the First Deputy Prime Minister of the Republic of Kazakhstan Alikhan Smailov. For their solution, protocol instructions were given.

At the same time, there are a number of additional tasks that need to be addressed, and these are:

  1. recruiting census personnel. At the second stage of the census, it is necessary to recruit 4 times more interviewers than in the field work of the first stage, and in accordance with this, it is necessary to strengthen the work of the local executive bodies, the Ministry of Labor and Social Protection of the Population of the Republic of Kazakhstan to attract interviewers from among the unemployed and students supervised by the Ministry of Education and Science of the Republic of Kazakhstan.
  2. Ensuring the safety of census personnel.
  3. Vaccination of the population, including vaccination of the involved census personnel.
  4. Providing premises with access to the UTS GO.
  5. Solving the issue of free travel for interviewers in public transport for the period of the census.
  6. Strengthening explanatory work among the population about the goals, methods and procedure for conducting the population census.

According to the First Deputy Prime Minister of the Republic of Kazakhstan Alikhan Smailov, the population census is carried out in all countries of the world. This year alone, the census is planned in 61 countries.

“We are conducting a population census as part of the 2020 World Population and Housing Census announced by the United Nations. Only a continuous census will provide complete information on such issues as education, migration, income, employment, marital status, fertility, planning for the birth of children, the degree of language proficiency, attitude to religion and the presence of factors limiting human life. These data are absent in state databases,” Smailov said.

He noted that with the introduction of digital technologies, automation of the process and the use of tablets instead of paper media, the census has become 2.6 times cheaper than the cost of the 2009 census. At the same time, the quality of data and the efficiency of collecting information will significantly improve. At the end of the census, the tablets will be handed over to schools and hospitals.

The census is a massive undertaking that requires the involvement of the whole community. It is necessary that the population reacted with understanding to this event. At the same time, the analysis shows that in some regions the preparatory work is not carried out at the proper level, namely in the city of Shymkent, Mangystau, Aktobe and Karaganda regions.

"In this regard, all local executive and central state bodies must strictly adhere to the action plan and ensure the high-quality conduct of the national population census in a timely manner," concluded First Deputy Prime Minister Alikhan Smailov.

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