RIYADH — Adel Al-Turaifi, minister of culture and information and chairman of the board of directors of the Saudi Press Agency (SPA), has expressed his delight over launching the new portal and identity of SPA. He said this step is an extension of the media march of the news agency, which continued to evolve ever since its inception.
In a press statement after inaugurating the new portal and identity of SPA Thursday evening, the minister said Saudi Arabia’s official agency is continuing the march started by great professionals, who worked to make SPA a training center for Saudi media men.
He said the agency has started services in several languages, including Chinese, Russian and Persian, and by the end of this year, the number of services will reach 10 languages in order to convey the reality of the Kingdom’s news and activities in all honesty and transparency and prevent attempts to confuse people who follow news about the Kingdom.
The minister said SPA entered into two new experiences of broadcasting in Spanish to cover the fourth summit of Arab countries and South America, and in Turkish to cover the 20th summit of G20 nations, which was held in Turkey. The new services enabled SPA to highlight the Saudi positions in a distinctive way.
The minister noted the interest of the Ministry of Culture and Information to support the presence of the Kingdom abroad under the guidance of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman to show the good image of the Kingdom globally.
Al-Turaifi also said there is a plan to strengthen SPA’s presence abroad.
He added that SPA will have the ability to transmit live when it moves to its new headquarters, and the agency will broadcast most social and political events in the country in real time.
He pointed out that the developmental trend of the ministry is also focused on the Radio and Television Commission as there is a new tendency at the commission through Al-Ekhbariya news channel to broadcast its material in several languages, including Persian. The ministry will hold training programs in the coming months to achieve these goals, he said.
The minister said the Kingdom deserves its strong voice to be heard internally and externally, and the change is coming at an appropriate time. He said there are more than five initiatives in this regard, which includes scholarships for employees and extensive projects in countries where the Kingdom’s voice needs to be heard louder.
He pointed out that the ministry has made contacts with the Saudi Journalists’ Association, conducted studies and will hold workshops during the next two weeks to support this trend.
SPA President Abdullah Bin Fahd Al-Hussein expressed his sincere thanks and appreciation to Al-Turaifi for his full support to SPA in order to bolster its media role.
Al-Hussein said since the establishment of the Saudi Press Agency 45 years ago, it has seen many developmental leaps in the field of broadcasting news based on credibility and clarity. He pointed out that with the rapid development of the means of modern communications technology, SPA is keen to keep pace with these developments to reach all people inside and outside Saudi Arabia and convey the country’s message to the world.
Al-Hussein said in the framework of SPA’s efforts to keep up with modern means of communication, it has expanded its news activities through social networking outlets such as Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and YouTube, and it is currently about to study broadcasting its news through other communication outlets such as Snapchat and Telegram in order to reach out to the largest possible audience.
He noted the importance of the existing partnership between SPA and the other local media organs to serve the general interest of the Kingdom and strengthen its regional and international presence.
In this regard, he emphasized the current policy of SPA to spread globally through modern languages, saying it is only a first step in the process of the media march, which aims to inform the public of local, Arab and international developments with a high level of professionalism, accuracy and excellence.
Al-Hussein said SPA will continue its developmental march tirelessly and will benefit from international expertise to improve its performance and will attract qualified Saudi media professionals to contribute to the coverage of the country’s developmental renaissance with news reports and photos. — SG/SPA