Nine in Ten Young Arabs Concerned About Unemployment, 11th Arab Youth Survey 2019 shows

Survey’s findings discussed at International Monetary Fund and World Bank Annual Meetings 2019

DUBAI, October 19, 2019: An overwhelming 89 percent of young Arabs expressed concern about levels of unemployment in their countries, according to a new finding from the 2019 ASDA’A BCW Arab Youth Survey,unveiled at an event organized by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) during the IMFand World Bank Annual Meetings in Washington, DC today.

The event, “Youth Aspirations in the Middle East and North Africa,” was moderated by Brian Cheung, a reporter with Yahoo Finance, and featured a presentation of key findings from this year’s Survey – now in its 11th annual edition – by Sunil John, Founder, ASDA’A BCW, and President, Middle East, BCW, which included new data about young Arabs’ concerns over their careers.

Joining John on the panel were Her Excellency Sahar Nasr, Egyptian Minister of Investment and International Cooperation, Jihad Azour, Director, IMF Middle East and Central Asia and SyrineChaalala, co-Founder and Managing Director, nextProtein.

As the largest demographic group of the Middle East and North Africa region, many Arab youth face severe hurdles joining the labour force, with World Bank research indicating 30 percent of 18-24 year olds are out of workin the Middle East and North Africa – the highest unemployment rate in the world. The 11th Arab Youth Survey shows that the rising cost of living and unemployment are the top two concerns among Arab youth butindicates a marked divide in opportunity between young Arabs living in the oil-rich Gulf states and their peers elsewhere, especially when it comes to expectations of their governments to address issues that matter to young people.

For example, while 97 percentof youth in UAE are confident their national government has the capacity to battle rising unemployment, 80 percentof youth in Iraq have no confidence in their governments to dothe same.

Young Arabs in the wealthy Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) states also look to their governments as a source of employment. Seven in 10 (69 percent) of youth in the GCC want to work in the public sector – while those elsewhere are more amenable to private sector jobs, with just four in 10 youth in North Africa (40 percent) and the Levant (39 percent) preferring government jobs.

Founder, ASDA’A BCW Sunil John (foreground)speaking at an event, “Youth Aspirations in the Middle East and North Africa,” organized by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) during the IMF and World Bank Annual Meetings in Washington, DC on October 19, 2019. Joining John on the panel were (L-R) moderator Brian Cheung, reporter with Yahoo Finance;Her Excellency Sahar Nasr, Egyptian Minister of Investment and International Cooperation; Jihad Azour, Director, IMF Middle East and Central Asia; and Syrine Chaalala, co-Founder and Managing Director, nextProtein. The panel discussed findings from the 11th Annual ASDA’A BCW Arab Youth Survey on pressing issues such as employment, education and role of government.

Presenting these findingsto the panel, Sunil John said, “As a developing region with some of the fastest growing economies in the world, Arab youthcannot afford to be left behind. Now, more than ever, the region’s young people require the support of their governments if they are to realise their potential and take up the productive, fulfillingand rewarding careers which are needed to drive the economies of the region to greater heights.”

Addressing the audience at the event, John said, “We are privileged to present our research at the prestigious IMF and World Bank Annual Meetings, and to share actionable insights with international governments and other decisionmakers. The Arab Youth Survey is for a platform fordialogue and I hope that the dialogue we spark today can be the basis of policies and actions that can help change the future for Arab youth.”

The International Monetary Fund and World Bank GroupAnnual Meetings bring together financial experts, government representatives, private sector executives, academics and other civil society organisation representatives to discuss issues of global concern, including the world economic outlook, poverty eradication, economic development, and aid effectiveness.

The Arab Youth Survey is the largest study of its kind into the region’s largest demographic: its youth. Every year,ASDA’A BCW generates evidence-based insights that provide governments, the private sector, media and civil society with critical information and analysis to inform decision-making and policy formation and build greater awareness of Arab youth.

The full survey data is available at www.arabyouthsurvey.com.

-Ends-

About ASDA’A BCW
ASDA’A was founded in 2000 as an independent agency by Sunil John, who continues to lead in the agency’s 20th year. In 2008, WPP acquired a majority stake in the firm and ASDA’A became an integral part of the Burson-Marsteller global network. After the recent merger of Burson-Marsteller and Cohn & Wolfe to create Burson Cohn & Wolfe, the firm is now ASDA’A BCW. Today, the agency employs over 160 professionals across nine wholly-owned offices and eight affiliates in 15 Middle East & North Africa (MENA) countries. The Agency now serves more than 100 retained clients in the region and is the leading PR consultancy in MENA. www.asdaa-bcw.com

About the ARAB YOUTH SURVEY
Now in its 11th year, the annual ASDA’A BCW Arab Youth Survey is one of the most important pieces of research produced in the Middle East and offers unique insight into the attitudes and aspirations of the region’s biggest demographic. With 65 percent of the Arab population under the age of 30, the Survey presents evidence-based insights into the attitudes of Arab youth, providing public and private sector organisations with data and analysis to inform their decision-making and policy creation. The survey is the largest of its kind of the region’s largest demographic, based on face-to-face interviews with 3,300 Arab men and women aged 18 to 24, and covers five of the Gulf Cooperation Council states (Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Saudi Arabia and the UAE), North Africa (Algeria, Egypt, Libya, Morocco, and Tunisia) the Levant (Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon and the Palestine territories) and Yemen.
www.arabyouthsurvey.com

For further information, please contact:
Margaret Flanagan
ASDA’A BCW, Dubai, UAE
Tel +971 4 4507 600
margaret.flanagan@bcw-global.com

Two-thirds of young Arabs view Iran as an enemy, 11th Arab Youth Survey 2019 shows

Survey’s findings debated at top international think tank Chatham House

Two-thirds of young Arabs view Iran as an enemy, according to findings from the 2019 ASDA’A BCW Arab Youth Survey which were debated at a special event for academics, journalists, policymakers and diplomats held at the London think tank Chatham House last week.

The event, “2019 Arab Youth Survey: Pragmatism, Frustration and Optimism,”featured a presentation of key findings from this year’s Survey, now in its 11th edition, including new data about young Arabs’ attitudes towards European nations and a panel discussion, chaired by Dr SanamVakil, Senior Research Fellow, Middle East and North Africa Programme, Chatham House.

With tensions running high in the Middle East after the strikes on Saudi Arabian oil installations on September 14, 2019, an attack which many observers are blaming on Iran the event proved to be an opportune moment to revisit Arab youth’s attitudes to their perceived allies and enemies. The Survey, conducted in January 2019, reveals that 67 per cent of young Arabs view Iran as an enemy, with 32 per cent viewing it as an ally.

The data reveals significant differences in perception based on region: in the GCC states, 87 per cent view Iran as an enemy, with just 13 per cent saying ally; while in the Levant, youth are equally split, with 51 per cent saying enemy against 49 per cent saying ally. In North Africa,64 per cent saw Iran as an enemy, with 35 per cent saying ally.

New findings from the Survey reveal that young Arabs are generally favourable towards European nations, with three European nations among the top 10viewed as a strong ally. France is viewed as an ally by 75 per cent of those surveyed, closely followed by Germany with 73 per cent and the UKat 68 per cent. Arab youthattitudes towards the USare much more polarised, with more than half (59 per cent) considering the US to be an enemy of their respective countries.

  • Founder of ASDA’A BCW, Sunil John, presents findings from the 11th Annual ASDA’A BCW Arab Youth Survey at an event at Chatham House in London on September 23, 2019.

Closer to home, 93 per cent of young Arabs seeing the UAE as their strongest ally, while 80 per cent seeing Saudi Arabia as their biggest ally – showing a high favourability towards the GCC.

Participating in the panel Sunil John, Founder, ASDA’A BCW, and President, Middle East, BCW said, “We’re moving from the power hubs of Baghdad and Cairo to those of Riyadh and Abu Dhabi.”

In addition to John, the panel, which explored the potential of harnessing the findings of the Arab Youth Survey to steer policy- and decision-making and to shed light on young people’s attitudes towards countries around the world,  comprised  Dr Simon Mabon, Senior Lecturer in Politics, Philosophy and Religion, University of Lancaster; and Sara Masry, an independent consultant. Dr Mabon provided his expert opinions on religion and regional conflicts, while Masry provided strategic insight into Arab societies and the role of social media among Arab youth.

  • (L-R) Founder, ASDA’A BCW Sunil John with Dr. Simon Mabon, Senior Lecturer at Lancaster University; Sara Masry, independent consultant; and Dr. Sanam Vakil, Senior Research Fellow, Chatham House at a panel discussion at Chatham House in London on September 23, 2019. The panel discussed findings from the 11th Annual ASDA’A BCW Arab Youth Survey on pressing issues such as religion, international relations, conflicts, and drug use.

Addressing the audience at the event, John said, “We are proud to bring our research on the largest demographic of the Arab world to one of the foremost think-tanks in the world. To bring about any progressive change, a dialogue must happen.This dialogue here today at Chatham House heralds the larger discourse of an evolving global future that has, till now, oftenfailed to hear the voice of Arab youth.”

The Arab Youth Survey is the largest study of its kind into the region’s largest demographic: its youth. Every year, ASDA’A BCW generates evidence-based insights that provide governments, the private sector, media and civil society with critical information and analysis to inform decision-making and policy formation and build greater awareness of Arab youth.

The full survey data is available at www.arabyouthsurvey.com.

-Ends-

About ASDA’A BCW

ASDA’A was founded in 2000 as an independent agency by Sunil John, who continues to lead in the agency’s 20th year. In 2008, WPP acquired a majority stake in the firm and ASDA’A became an integral part of the Burson-Marsteller global network. After the recent merger of Burson-Marsteller and Cohn & Wolfe to create Burson Cohn & Wolfe, the firm is now ASDA’A BCW. Today, the agency employs over 160 professionals across nine wholly-owned offices and eight affiliates in 15 Middle East & North Africa (MENA) countries. The Agency now serves more than 100 retained clients in the region and is the leading PR consultancy in MENA. www.asdaa-bcw.com

About the ARAB YOUTH SURVEY

Now in its 11th year, the annual ASDA’A BCW Arab Youth Survey is one of the most important pieces of research produced in the Middle East and offers unique insight into the attitudes and aspirations of the region’s biggest demographic.With 65 per cent of the Arab population under the age of 30, the Survey presents evidence-based insights into the attitudes of Arab youth, providing public and private sector organisations with data and analysis to inform their decision-making and policy creation.The survey is the largest of its kind of the region’s largest demographic, based on face-to-face interviews with 3,300 Arab men and women aged 18 to 24, and covers five of the Gulf Cooperation Council states (Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Saudi Arabia and the UAE), North Africa (Algeria, Egypt, Libya, Morocco, and Tunisia) the Levant (Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon and the Palestine territories) and Yemen.
www.arabyouthsurvey.com

For further information, please contact:
Margaret Flanagan
ASDA’A BCW, Dubai, UAE
Tel +971 4 4507 600
margaret.flanagan@bcw-global.com

Young Arabs Call for Religious Reform and Expect Their Governments to Deliver on the Economy

  • U.S. and Saudi Arabia boost influence in region, but youth divided on whether America is a friend or foe
  • Findings from the region’s largest independent study of its kind on Arab youthshed light on young people’s attitudes on drug use and mental health
  • 11th ASDA’A BCW Arab Youth Survey reveals opinions of 3,300 young Arab nationals aged 18-24 on political, economic, social and cultural issues

Dubai, UAE; April30, 2019:Young Arabs say religion plays too big a role in the Middle East and believe that religiousinstitutions should be reformed, according to findings from the 11th annual ASDA’A BCW Arab Youth Survey, released today. The survey findings are based on 3,300 face-to-face interviews conducted by PSB between January 6 and January 29, 2019 with young Arab nationals aged 18 to 24 in 15 states in the Middle East and North Africa, with a 50:50 male female split.

The survey, the largest independent study of its kind into the region’s largest demographic, finds that two-in-three (66 percent) young Arabs sayreligion plays too big a role in the region – an increase of 16percentage points since 2015 –  while even more (79 percent)say the region needs to reform its religious institutions. This call for reform can likely be explained by the fact that half (50 percent) say the Arab world’s religious values are holding the region back.

The 2019 Survey also reveals that young people across the Arab world want to see an end to regional conflicts, such as the Syrian civil war with 73 percent saying the conflict should end regardless,whether Bashar Al Assad stays in power or not. Instead of the regional conflicts, the survey data suggest that young Arabs want their governments to focus more on the economic issues, namely jobs and rising cost of living, the two issues seen as the largest obstacles facing the region.

Young Arabs have high expectations for their governments to deliver on the economic matters, as 78 percent say it is their government’s responsibility to provide jobs to all citizens; 78 percent say they expect energy subsidies; 60 percent say their government must provide housing to all; and one in three (33 percent) even say it is their government’s duty to provide financial debt repayment to all citizens. In the eyes of many young Arabs, their governments are currently falling short of meeting their expectations as nearly two in three (65 percent) say their country is not doing enough to help young families (83 percent in the Levant, 74 percent in North Africa, and 39 percent in the Gulf Cooperation Council [GCC] countries).

“The Arab Youth Survey once again provides tremendous insight into the thoughts of young people living in one of the most complex regions in the world,” said Donna Imperato, Global CEO, BCW (Burson Cohn & Wolfe). “The informationsurfaced by the study provides important context for business leaders and policy makers as they work to understand and connect with this next generation of leaders.”

The 2019 survey also explores how young Arabs perceive other countries in the region and outside the Middle East. For the eighth year running, the United Arab Emirates is seen as the top country to live in and for other countries to emulate. More than nine in 10 (93 percent) young Arabs also say the UAE is an ally of their country. Nearly as many young Arabs view Egypt (84 percent) and Saudi Arabia (80 percent) as allies to their country. Meanwhile, a strong majority say the United States is an adversary (59 percent) rather than an ally (41 percent). In fact, the views of the U.S. among Arab youth are nearly as polarizing as the views of Iran (67 percent adversary vs. 32 percent ally); and when asked whether U.S. or Russia is a stronger ally of their country, young Arabs are just as likely to select Russia (37 percent) as the U.S. (38 percent), with another 25 percent saying that neither of the two global powers are an ally.

For the first time in the history of the survey, Arab youth’s attitudes towards such issues as drug usage and mental health were explored. More than half (57 percent) of young Arabs say that drug usage among young people in their country is on the rise, and 57 percent also say that drugs are easy to obtain in their country. The perceived rise of drug use among youth is particularly prevalent in the Levant (76 percent) and North Africa (59 percent).

When asked about mental health issues, a majority (54 percent) say accessing quality medical care for mental health issues is difficult in their country, for some likely made even more difficult by the fact that half (50 percent) of Arab youth say there is a stigma around seeking medical care for mental health issues, such as anxiety or depression. The survey reveals that mental health is not an issue on the margins, as nearly one in three (31 percent) say they know someone suffering from mental health issues.

“At BCW, we are committed to using data, insights and analysis to fulfil our purpose of moving people, providing new perspectives on issues that are important to all of us,” said Donna Imperato, CEO, BCW. “The ASDA’A BCW Arab Youth Survey is a perfect example of putting this into practice. Over 11 years it has established itself as a valuable research project that provides business leaders and policymakers with powerful insights into a critical demographic.”

“For 11 years, the survey hasprovidedinsights into thehopes, fears and aspirations of the region’s youth,” said Sunil John, President, ASDA’A BCW. “This year’s finding show that youth are looking at their governments to reshuffle their priorities, especially when it comes to the role played by religion and seemingly endless conflicts – and they want to see change.

“Young Arabs who have grown up against a backdrop of extremism and geopolitical conflictsare tired of the region being defined by war and conflict,” John continued. “They say they want their leaders to focus on the economy andproviding better services such as quality education and healthcare, and respondents, particularly in North Africa and the Levant, expect their governments to do much more to address these core concerns.”

With 65 percent of the Arab population under the age of 30, the survey presents evidence-based insights into the attitudes of Arab youth, providing public and private sector organisations with data and analysis to inform their decision-making and policy creation.

Other key findings from this year’s Survey include:

  • Three in four young Arabs are concerned about the quality of education in their country, and two in three say they would prefer to pursue higher education outside their country
  • Arab youth view Saudi Arabia and the U.S. as the two nations increasing their influence in the region more than any other countries
  • Young Arabs are driving the region’s e-commerce boom and are beginning to prefer paying by card rather than cash when shopping online
  • Among Arab youth, social media is more popular and seen as more trustworthy than traditional media

Read the full findings and expert insight and commentary on this year’s ASDA’A BCWArab Youth Survey at www.arabyouthsurvey.com

-ENDS-

About ASDA’A BCW

ASDA’A was founded in 2000 as an independent agency by Sunil John, who continues to lead in the agency’s 20th year. In 2008, WPP acquired a majority stake in the firm. ASDA’A became an integral part of the Burson-Marsteller global network. After the recent merger of Burson-Marsteller and Cohn& Wolfe to create Burson Cohn & Wolfe, the firm is now ASDA’A BCW. Today, the agency employs over 160 professionals across nine wholly-owned offices and seven affiliates in 15 Middle East & North Africa (MENA) countries. The Agency now serves more than 100 retained clients in the region and is the leading PR consultancy in MENA.www.asdaa-bcw.com

The ASDA’A BCW Arab Youth Survey underlines the agency’s ‘power of three’ model, which combines public relations, research and digital capabilities through three specialist brands. ASDA’A BCW works closely with its sister company PSB Middle East, the research firm, which conducted 3,300 face-to-face interviews with young Arab nationals aged 18 to 24 in 15 MENA countries; while Proof, the digital, data and design agency, drives digital and creative aspects of the Survey including the new logo and brand identity, and its digital and social presence.

About the Arab Youth Survey

Now in its 11th year, the annual ASDA’A BCW Arab Youth Survey is one of the most important pieces of research produced in the Middle East and offers unique insight into the attitudes and aspirations of the region’s biggest demographic.With 65 per cent of the Arab population under the age of 30, the Survey presents evidence-based insights into the attitudes of Arab youth, providing public and private sector organisations with data and analysis to inform their decision-making and policy creation.The survey is the largest of its kind of the region’s largest demographic, based on face-to-face interviews with 3,300 Arab men and women aged 18 to 24, and covers five of the Gulf Cooperation Council states (Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Saudi Arabia and the UAE), North Africa (Algeria, Egypt, Libya, Morocco, and Tunisia) the Levant (Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon and the Palestine territories) and Yemen.

www.arabyouthsurvey.com

The ASDA’A BCW Arab Youth Survey has won the coveted IN2 SABRE Award for ‘Thought Leadership in PR’ in EMEA for three consecutive years and was awarded the PRWeek Global Award for Middle East Campaign of the Year in 2018.

Winning streak continues as Arab youth choose UAE as top country to live in and to emulate for 8th year running

  • 11th ASDA’A BCW Arab Youth Survey reveals young Arabs associate the Emirates with job opportunities, security & stabilityand generous salaries
  • Nine in ten also regard the UAE as their own country’s strongest ally, and say UAE is second only to Saudi Arabia among Arab nations in increasing its influence in the region over past five years

Dubai, UAE; April30, 2019:For the eighth consecutive year, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) is seen by young Arabs as a model nation and the number onecountryto live in, according to the findings from the 11th annual ASDA’A BCW Arab Youth Survey, released today.

The surveyis based on 3,300 face-to-face interviews conducted by international research firm PSB between January 6 and January 29, 2019 with young Arab nationals aged 18-24 in 15states in the Middle East and North Africa, with a 50:50 male female split.

More than two in five (44 per cent) young Arabs say the UAE is the country they would want to live in, followed by Canada (22 per cent), United States (21 per cent), Turkey (17 per cent) and the United Kingdom (15 per cent). The preference of young Arabs for the UAE continues an eight-year trend that has seen the country cement its lead, particularly since 2015 when 20 per cent selected the UAE as their preferred countryin which to live,a figure that has now more than doubled in 2019.

Young Arabs also see the UAE as a model nation, with 42 per cent stating they would like their country to emulate it, far surpassing any other Arab or Western country. The US and Japan tied in second position at 20 per cent each, followed by Turkey (19 per cent) and Canada (18 per cent) rounding out the top five.

Arab youth also view the UAE as a strong ally, with 93 per cent saying the UAE is an ally of their country, surpassing other Arab (Egypt 84 per cent ally; Saudi Arabia 80 per cent) and non-Arab (Turkey 68 per cent, Russia 64 per cent, and US 41 per cent) states.

“The UAE’s growing reputation among Arab youth as the best country to live in and for their nations to emulate highlights the forward-looking development strategy and future-focused vision of the UAE leadership,” said Sunil John, President, ASDA’A BCW. “In the past eight years of the survey, the positive perception of the Emirates has only gained in strength year-on-year, underlining the UAE as a true beacon of hope and a model nation for young people across the region.

“From investments in world-class infrastructure to the focus of the leadership to build smart, sustainable cities and leverage the advantages of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, the UAE’s predominant narrative appeals to young people for the job opportunities and the quality of life the nation assures,” John added.

Young Arabs are drawn to the UAE by its wide range of work opportunities (cited by 38 per cent) followed by its safe and secure environment (36 per cent) and generous salary packages (30 per cent). The UAE’s appeal is also led by young Arabs seeing it as a good place to raise a family (22 per cent), the nation’s high-quality education system (20 per cent) and welcoming and friendly expats (20 per cent).

The reasons for the UAE’s popularity go beyond stability and well-paid job opportunities, Johnsaid: “I think the fact that over the past eight years the UAE has become an uncontested leader in the eyes of Arab youth really stems from the country’ssuccess in achieving a vision, articulated by the leadership many years ago, of becoming a model country, not just in the Middle East, but globally.”

In a year that the UAE has declared as the Year of Tolerance, the first quarter has already witnessed the visit of Pope Francis to Abu Dhabi in February – the first ever by a Pontiff to the Arabian Peninsula – which was followed, just a month later, by the Special Olympics World Games, also in Abu Dhabi. Next year will see another major global event, with Dubai Expo 2020 expecting to record 25 million visits, with 70 per cent of visitors to come from outside the UAE.

“It is not just that the UAE is increasingly embracing tolerance,” said John, “it’s that in doing so, the Emirates is going against the current sweeping across the region – and much of the world, for that matter – where we see nationalism on the rise. Here, we see a push towards openness, tolerance, and co-existence.”

Read the full findings and expert insight and commentary on this year’s ASDA’A BCWArab Youth Survey at www.arabyouthsurvey.com

-ENDS-

About ASDA’A BCW

ASDA’A was founded in 2000 as an independent agency by Sunil John, who continues to lead in the agency’s 20th year. In 2008, WPP acquired a majority stake in the firm. ASDA’A became an integral part of the Burson-Marsteller global network. After the recent merger of Burson-Marsteller and Cohn& Wolfe to create Burson Cohn & Wolfe, the firm is now ASDA’A BCW. Today, the agency employs over 160 professionals across nine wholly-owned offices and seven affiliates in 15 Middle East & North Africa (MENA) countries. The Agency now serves more than 100 retained clients in the region and is the leading PR consultancy in MENA.www.asdaa-bcw.com

The ASDA’A BCW Arab Youth Survey underlines the agency’s ‘power of three’ model, which combines public relations, research and digital capabilities through three specialist brands. ASDA’A BCW works closely with its sister company PSB Middle East, the research firm, which conducted 3,300 face-to-face interviews with young Arab nationals aged 18 to 24 in 15 MENA countries; while Proof, the digital, data and design agency, drives digital and creative aspects of the Survey including the new logo and brand identity, and its digital and social presence.

About the Arab Youth Survey

Now in its 11th year, the annual ASDA’A BCW Arab Youth Survey is one of the most important pieces of research produced in the Middle East and offers unique insight into the attitudes and aspirations of the region’s biggest demographic.With 65 per cent of the Arab population under the age of 30, the Survey presents evidence-based insights into the attitudes of Arab youth, providing public and private sector organisations with data and analysis to inform their decision-making and policy creation.The survey is the largest of its kind of the region’s largest demographic, based on face-to-face interviews with 3,300 Arab men and women aged 18-24, and covers five of the  Gulf Cooperation Council states (Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Saudi Arabia and the UAE), North Africa (Algeria, Egypt, Libya, Morocco, and Tunisia) the Levant (Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon and Palestine) and Yemen.

www.arabyouthsurvey.com

The ASDA’A BCW Arab Youth Survey has won the coveted IN2 SABRE Award for ‘Thought Leadership in PR’ in EMEA for three consecutive years and was awarded the PRWeek Global Award for Middle East Campaign of the Year in 2018.

About PSB

PSB is a full-service custom research and analytics consultancy that connects data-driven insights with human experience to solve clients’ most critical challenges. With a heritage in political polling, PSB brings the agility of campaign strategy to research and consulting across a range of industries, including technology, healthcare, financial services and entertainment. PSB is a member of the BCW Group of companies, which is a part of WPP, the world leader in communications services.

www.psbresearch.com

Saudi youth give high marks to the government and say the Kingdom is moving in the right direction

  • 11th annual ASDA’A BCW Arab Youth Survey reveals nine-in-ten young Saudis believe Vision 2030 will secure the future of the Saudi economy
  • Young Saudis say the Kingdom’s government has the right policies to address the issues most important to youth
  • Among young Arabs across the region, Saudi Arabia is perceived as an ally whose influence on the Arab world is on the rise

Riyadh, Saudi Arabia; April 30, 2019: The vast majority of young Saudis say their country is headed in the right direction, the Saudi economy is on the right track,and the governmentis effectivelyaddressing issues most important to young people, according to the findings of the11th annual ASDA’A BCW Arab Youth Survey, released today.

The survey is based on 3,300 face-to-face interviews conducted by international research firm PSB between January 6 and 29, 2019 with young Arab nationals aged 18-24 in 15 states in the Middle East and North Africa, with a 50:50 male female split.

More than nine-in-ten (93 per cent) of young Saudis say the Kingdom is headed in the right direction and 83 per cent say the Saudi economy is on the right track. Saudi youth are significantly more optimistic than young Arabs in many other countries, with just overhalf (53 per cent) of young Arabs across the region saying their country is headed in the right direction, and 53 per cent saying their nation’s economy is on the right track.

Young Saudis express strong optimism about their personal future, with three-in-four(75 per cent) saying they will have a better life than their parents, while just 10 per cent expect to be worse off than their parents.

This strong sense of optimism translates to Saudi youth giving high marks to the Kingdom’s government and its policies. Nearly nine-in-ten (89 per cent) are confident that Vision 2030 will succeed in securing the future of the Saudi economy and nearly as many (83 per cent) say their government has the right policies to address the issues most important to young people. Meanwhile, only 54 per cent of young Arabs across the regionexpress confidence in their respective government’s policies on issues key to young people.

Among Arab youth across the region, Saudi Arabia is seen as an influential ally. Young Arabs say the Kingdom has increased its influence in the region more than any other Arab country in the past five years (37 per cent for Saudi Arabia, compared to 27 per cent for the UAE, 11 per cent for Egypt, and 21 per cent for other Arab countries). A strong majority (80 per cent) of young Arabs across the region say Saudi Arabia is an ally of their country. Saudi Arabia is widely perceived to be an ally by the majority of young people in Middle East, with 80 per cent saying the Kingdom is an ally of their nation. Young Arabs also believe that the Kingdom is the Arab country that has most increased its influence in the Middle East over the past five years.

Sunil John, President – Middle East of ASDA’A BCW, said: “Across all indicators Saudi youth are extremely optimistic about their future and share a positive outlook about the direction of their country. This is underlined by their vote of confidence in the Saudi Vision 2030 roadmap, which is transforming the economy and creating job opportunities.It comes as no surprise that an overwhelming majority of Saudi youth say their government has the right policies in place to address the issues most important to the Kingdom’s youth.”

Read the full findings and expert insight and commentary on this year’s ASDA’A BCW Arab Youth Survey at www.arabyouthsurvey.com

-ENDS-

About ASDA’A BCW

ASDA’A was founded in 2000 as an independent agency by Sunil John, who continues to lead in the agency’s 20th year. In 2008, WPP acquired a majority stake in the firm. ASDA’A became an integral part of the Burson-Marsteller global network. After the recent merger of Burson-Marsteller and Cohn & Wolfe to create Burson Cohn & Wolfe, the firm is now ASDA’A BCW. Today, the agency employs over 160 professionals across nine wholly-owned offices and seven affiliates in 15 Middle East & North Africa (MENA) countries. The Agency now serves more than 100 retained clients in the region and is the leading PR consultancy in MENA. www.asdaa-bcw.com

The ASDA’A BCW Arab Youth Survey underlines the agency’s ‘power of three’ model, which combines public relations, research and digital capabilities through three specialist brands. ASDA’A BCW works closely with its sister company PSB Middle East, the research firm, which conducted 3,300 face-to-face interviews with young Arab nationals aged 18 to 24 in 15 MENA countries; while Proof, the digital, data and design agency, drives digital and creative aspects of the Survey including the new logo and brand identity, and its digital and social presence.

About the Arab Youth Survey

Now in its 11th year, the annual ASDA’A BCW Arab Youth Survey is one of the most important pieces of research produced in the Middle East and offers unique insight into the attitudes and aspirations of the region’s biggest demographic.With 65 per cent of the Arab population under the age of 30, the Survey presents evidence-based insights into the attitudes of Arab youth, providing public and private sector organisations with data and analysis to inform their decision-making and policy creation.The survey is the largest of its kind of the region’s largest demographic, based on face-to-face interviews with 3,300 Arab men and women aged 18-24, and covers five of the  Gulf Cooperation Council states (Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Saudi Arabia and the UAE), North Africa (Algeria, Egypt, Libya, Morocco, and Tunisia) the Levant (Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon and Palestine) and Yemen.

www.arabyouthsurvey.com

About PSB

PSB is a full-service custom research and analytics consultancy that connects data-driven insights with human experience to solve clients’ most critical challenges. With a heritage in political polling, PSB brings the agility of campaign strategy to research and consulting across a range of industries, including technology, healthcare, financial services and entertainment. PSB is a member of the BCW Group of companies, which is a part of WPP, the world leader in communications services.

www.psbresearch.com

Why do they love Mohammed bin Salman?

DUBAI; JULY 11, 2018:“We wouldn’t have gone alone, we needed him to be able to go further into the dream,” this is exactly what a young man whom I met in a London hotel lobby told me.

I have seen the enthusiasm of Saudi youth after the kingdom’s Vision 2030 was announced – an enthusiasm which was about to burn out before that. When I delivered a lecture in Columbia University in December 2017, this point was implicit in every question, why do the Arab youth, particularly those from Saudi Arabia, love Prince Mohammed bin Salman?

In terms of my generation, we may describe ourselves as confused; angry because years from our lives were hijacked by religious movements and in the name of nationalism and wars that only ended for new ones to begin. Yes, in the Gulf, we were and we are still more stable and enjoy better welfare than other Arab countries, but we were standing tall without a dream in the distance. We were standing tall as our students went to study abroad, we paved roads that were full of sand and watched Arabic movies in hopes that we’d have screens which we’d see our sons and daughters on, so that we see ourselves. We believed in the arts and we still do. We used to love in silence, walk in silence and stay distant from everyone. We were building the house where the dream will dwell – a dream that awoke with Mohammed bin Salman.

Irish satirist Jonathan Swift, who died in 1745, once said: “Vision is the art of seeing what is invisible to others.” The ability to dream since the dawn of history continues to awaken the path and empower men. Bright minds are those that see the blessing in productiveness and hard work, not in stillness and inactivity. There’s nothing truer than the determination of a man who experienced staying in his office 18 hours a day to smile and say: “We can go far over there. We have everything. God granted us nature that makes the whole wants to visit. Why don’t we invest in museums? Who are we leaving the coral reefs and the magnificent islands for? For how long will we rely on oil when we have everything? We will not allow the best years of our lives to be hijacked from us.”

Mohammed bin Salman sees the challenge and takes it head on, and he makes rapid progress. It is the walk of a man whose dream will be stopped by nothing except death. How can we not love him, Turki? the young Saudi man said.

You cannot blame Arab and Gulf youths for loving the prince. Our Arab countries have been struggling since the 1960s across the region – with few exceptions that can be counted on the fingers of one hand. They have been through an unprecedented phase of weakness as republics slipped into chaos, some countries’ springs turned into autumns, and violence only produced more violence, all the way to the Levant, where one is distressed from the news of those killed every day. All of this happened because an Iranian cleric saw an Arab soft spot and snuck in from the North and South and in vain wanted to snatch away Yemen, considered the “old house” of the Arab world. He armed the militia of ignorance in Saa’da, but only to create a graveyard. Yemen is the origin of every Arab as bin Salman put it. He’s the one who supplied Yemen with forces and committed to purge Yemen of the defilement of Khomeini and his rogue remnants.

War on corruption

In Saudi Arabia, everyone loves Prince Mohammed bin Salman because his war on corruption surprised those who do not know him and confirmed to those who do know him that his ambitions are higher than first perceived. Where others need a long time to achieve something, Mohammed bin Salman needs less. Since he can deal with all these affairs during this short time, it’s his right to dream and to see the dream approaching him!

Mohammed bin Salman sees the challenge and takes it head on, and he makes rapid progress. It is the walk of a man whose dream will be stopped by nothing except death.

Turki Aldakhil

During his interview with American writer David Ignatius, Prince Mohammed bin Salman said: “You have a body that has cancer everywhere, the cancer of corruption. You need to have chemo, the shock of chemo, or the cancer will eat the body,” adding that the kingdom couldn’t meet budget targets without halting the looting.

Numbers, which the prince is fond of, do not lie and cannot be embellished. He cites numbers, holds others accountable based on them and is biased to them just like a man of law who trusts laws and regulations. This is why numbers came in his favor when Arab youth were asked about him in the 10th annual ASDA’A Burson-Marsteller Arab Youth Survey. It found that 90% of Saudi youth and 60% of Arab youth view Mohammed bin Salman as a strong and influential leader who will impact the region in the future.

This survey was not random as it included 3,500 youths from both genders and aged between 18 and 24 years old. The survey was conducted face to face with the youths who represent 16 Arab countries.

Whenever I see Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s ambition, I believe in the honesty of the smiling young man in the lobby at the London hotel when he said: “We wouldn’t have done it alone,” but we needed a man who could turn dreams into reality.

This article is also available in Arabic.

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Turki Aldakhil is the General Manager of Al Arabiya News Channel. He began his career as a print journalist, covering politics and culture for the Saudi newspapers Okaz, Al-Riyadh and Al-Watan. He then moved to pan-Arab daily Al-Hayat and pan-Arab news magazine Al-Majalla. Turki later became a radio correspondent for the French-owned pan-Arab Radio Monte Carlo and MBC FM. He proceeded to Elaph, an online news magazine and Alarabiya.net, the news channel’s online platform. Over a ten-year period, Dakhil’s weekly Al Arabiya talk show “Edaat” (Spotlights) provided an opportunity for proponents of Arab and Islamic social reform to make their case to a mass audience. Turki also owns Al Mesbar Studies and Research Centre and Madarek Publishing House in Dubai. He has received several awards and honors, including the America Abroad Media annual award for his role in supporting civil society, human rights and advancing women’s roles in Gulf societies. He tweets @TurkiAldakhil.

Young Arabs say Egypt has the MENA region’s best chance of victory in biggest ever FIFA World Cup for Arab teams

  • Two-thirds of young Arabs say they will closely follow the World Cup competition
  • Saudi Arabia face Russia in opening game – but a third of young Arabs say region’s best hope for progressing lies with Egypt

DUBAI; JUNE 4, 2018: With a record four Arab national teams competing in the FIFA World Cup this year –  Egypt, Morocco, Tunisia and Saudi Arabia – ASDA’A Burson-Marsteller’s 10th annual Arab Youth Survey reveals that young people across the region think that Egypt has the best chance among the Arab nations of progressing through the tournament.

Two in three young Arabs (65 per cent) say they will closely follow the World Cup competition, which kicks off in Russia on June 14, 2018 with the Saudia Arabia team playing the hosts of the World Cup; and young Arab women (60 per cent) are nearly as likely to follow the competition as young Arab men (70 per cent). Among those who will follow the competition, 14 per cent say that Germany will be crowned the FIFA World Cup 2018 champions, 13 per cent say Brazil has the best chance to win, while another 12 per cent expect Argentina to win.

Among those who will follow the competition, 11 per cent say they will support Egypt, making the Egyptian team as popular as Argentina (12 per cent) and Germany (10 per cent).  Egypt is the clear fan favorite in the GCC countries, with 24 per cent of GCC youth saying they will support Egypt in the competition.

When asked specifically about the four Arab nations taking part in the World Cup, Egypt is the favorite with a third or respondents (34 per cent) saying Egypt will outperform other Arab countries in Russia, followed by Morocco (22 per cent), Saudi Arabia (21 per cent), and Tunisia (19 per cent).

Sunil John, founder of ASDA’A Burson-Marsteller and President, Middle East, Burson Cohn & Wolfe, said: “The FIFA World Cup is going to be a major event for youth in the Middle East and North Africa. With the highest ever participation from Arab national teams, it’s not surprising that two in every three young Arabs will be following the competition closely. The FIFA World Cup encourages a sense of unity among supporters in the Arab world, and brings feelings of hope and excitement across the region.”

The survey was conducted prior to Egypt’s star player, Mohammed Saleh, suffering a shoulder injury during Liverpool’s defeat to Real Madrid in the Champions League final last month.  Saleh’s involvement in Russia is still hanging in the balance but there is hope that he will  make a full recovery and participate in Egypt’s opening match against Uruguay on June 15, 2018.

The ASDA’A Burson-Marsteller Arab Youth Survey is the largest survey of its kind of the Middle East’s largest demographic – its youth. For this year’s Survey, international polling firm PSB Research conducted 3,500 face-to-face interviews with exclusively Arab national men and women aged 18-24 in the six Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries of the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Kuwait, Oman and Bahrain; Iraq, Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Libya, the Palestinian Territories, Tunisia, Morocco, Algeria and Yemen, between January 21 and February 20, 2018.

Read the full findings and expert insight and commentary on this year’s Survey at www.arabyouthsurvey.com

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About the Arab Youth Survey
The ASDA’A Burson-Marsteller Arab Youth Survey, launched in 2008, is the largest survey of its kind of the Middle East’s largest demographic – its youth. It provides governments, the private sector and civil society with insights into the hopes, concerns and aspirations of Arab youth. For the 10th annual ASDA’A Burson-Marsteller Arab Youth Survey 2018, PSB Research, an international polling firm, conducted 3,500 face-to-face interviews with Arab national men and women aged 18-24 between January 21 and February 20, 2018, in the six Gulf Cooperation Council states (Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the UAE), North Africa (Algeria, Egypt, Libya, Morocco, and Tunisia) the Levant (Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon and Palestinian Territories) and Yemen. The margin of error is +/-1.65%. In-depth results from the Survey, including a white paper in Arabic and English, are available on www.arabyouthsurvey.com

About Burson Cohn & Wolfe
Burson Cohn & Wolfe (BCW) is one of the world’s largest, full-service, global communications agencies with deep expertise in digital and integrated communications, across all industry sectors. The agency combines expertise in digitally-driven, creative content and integrated communications – across the consumer, healthcare and technology sectors – with deep strength in public affairs, corporate reputation, crisis, and research and analytics. Burson Cohn & Wolfe is a network of more than 4,000 employees across 42 countries.

About ASDA’A Burson-Marsteller
Established in 2000, ASDA’A Burson-Marsteller is the region’s leading public relations consultancy, with ten wholly-owned offices and seven affiliates across 15 countries in the Middle East and North Africa. The agency provides services to governments, multinational businesses and regional corporate clients and institutions, operating five specialist communication practices –  Consumer & Healthcare, Corporate, Financial, Enterprise & Technology and Public Affairs. A digital, design and marketing subsidiary – Proof IC – and a full-service research insights agency – PSB Research Middle East – complete the offering.
www.asdaabm.com    http://www.arabyouthsurvey.com/

About PSB Research:
PSB is a full-service global custom research and analytics consultancy that connects data-driven insights with human experience to help the world’s most admired brands solve their most critical challenges. PSB brings together the lessons from the campaign trail and the boardroom along with a competitive mindset that is fast and focused on winning. Rooted in the science of public opinion and advanced analytics, PSB specializes in providing messaging and strategic guidance for blue-chip political, corporate, technology, healthcare, entertainment, and government/public sector clients. PSB’s operations include over 200 consultants and a sophisticated in-house market research infrastructure with the capability to conduct work in over 90 countries. The company operates offices around the world, including in Washington D.C., New York, Seattle, Los Angeles, Denver, London and Dubai. www.psbresearch.com

For further information, please contact:
Margaret Flanagan
ASDA’A Burson-Marsteller
Dubai, UAE
T: 971 4 4507600
E: ays@bm.com
www.arabyouthsurvey.com