1996 News Story

Higher education stressed at Algiers conference

Addressing the Sixth Conference of Arab Ministers of Higher Education and Scientific Research in Algiers last night, Saudi Minister of Higher Education Dr. Khalid Al-Angary stressed the importance of higher education, and called on the Arab world to follow up on scientific developments and technical progress, but "that should not be at the expense of our Arab and Islamic identity", he said. Highlighting the great strides the Kingdom has made in this field, Dr. Al-Angary reiterated the attention given to the entire educational sector by Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Fahd Bin Abdul Aziz. Both general and higher education are steadily progressing in the Kingdom under his wise policy, which focuses on acquisition of knowledge without harm to Islamic values.

Dr. Al-Angary called for greater cooperation among Arab universities, and for the establishment of joint scientific institutions as well as an evaluation of existing institutions, underscoring the importance of Arabization of higher education in order to pave the way for the realization of Arab innovation in all spheres. The infrastructure on which Arabization will depend includes translation of books and periodicals published in other languages as well as of research papers and seminar reports. Establishment of a Translation Training Center, said Dr. Al-Angary, is an essential matter.

At the conference, the Arab Bureau for Education in the Gulf States (ABEGS) reported that the number of universities in the Arabian Gulf area is 13, with King Saud University in Saudi Arabia the oldest, and Bahrain University the youngest. The total number of students registered at these universities in the academic year 1994-95 was just over 1.2 million. The number of academic staff was 18,775.