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Global geo-information entity urged

26, May 2016, DOHA: The Arab Committee of UN experts on Geographical Information System (GIS) management yesterday concluded its second meeting held for two days at Hilton Doha.

It was organised by the Geographical Information System Department at the Ministry of Municipality and Environment to seek approval for unified standards for geo-information and setting up a unified work plan to accomplish rule components for geographical data and unified conditions.

The members of the committee, who represent nine countries, discussed suggestions on renewal and development of geo-information. It discussed suggestions related to land cover, infrastructure, border, altitudes, geographical names, transport networks, flat graphics, statistical units and water layers.

The participating countries are seeking to come out, through the UN initiative, to establish a unified global entity for the management of geo-information and unifying such data from different areas.

This, according to the initiative, will help the UN and other countries identify areas in case of crises or natural disasters which require fast relief by making the data accessible for all and continuously updating it.

The committee aims to develop technical work of geo-information focusing on four areas — studying the rules and regulations related to geo-information; identifying common reference for developing geo-information; considering the basic infrastructure of geo-information; and means of integrating geo-information and statistical data, said Saad bin Mohammad Al Hamlan, Director, Surveying Information System (SIS) at Tourism Authority of Saudi Arabia.

The committee, one of the five UN regional entities started work in 2014 in Riyadh, Al Hamlan added. The other four are the European, African, Asian, and two Americas committees.

The Arab committee which has four sub-committees will be hosted by Qatar next year said Al Emadi.The Peninsula