through the Decree 42/2022published this Tuesday in the Official bulletin, the Government confirmed that the next national census will be held on May 18 this year and that this date will be a holiday throughout the country. In addition, it gave the Ministry of Economy the power to carry out “the necessary contracts” to carry out the operation.
With the signature of the president Alberto Fernandez, of the chief of staff, John Manzur, and the holder of the economic portfolio, Martin Guzman, the authorities advanced with the preparations for the survey, which was originally going to be carried out in 2020, but was suspended due to the coronavirus pandemic.
In the first place, “national organizations were instructed to print preferential dispatch and urgent procedure for all requests for collaboration and mobilization of human and material resources”, which were required by INDEC, the body in charge of the population registration task.
Likewise, the Chief of Staff delegated to the portfolio led by Guzmán “the exercise of the powers and competences” to “the necessary contracts for the purposes of carrying out pre-census, census and post-census activities”.
In the recitals of the Decree, it was stated that the law provides for the carrying out of national population, family and housing censuses every ten years, in years ending in “zero”.
For this reason, the last survey should have been carried out in 2020, but in that year the Government decided to postpone it due to the pandemic, taking into account that at that time the country was still in full strict quarantine.
The authorities assured that “the sanitary measures taken at the national, provincial, Autonomous City of Buenos Aires and municipal levels in order to mitigate the spread of the virus have been considered for the purpose of determining the schedule of census activities.”
On the other hand, they recalled that Law No. 24,254 established that the day the so-called National Census of Population, Households and Housing 2020 “It will have the quality of a national holiday.”
In the framework of the preparations, “the different dependencies of the National Public Administration were required to collaborate with the personnel at their command, the affectation of premises, furniture, equipment, means of mobility, mass media and all other available resources. as requested” for this activity.
In this sense, the Executive Power remarked that “It is appropriate to adopt measures that facilitate the performance of procedures for the acquisition of goods and services, so that they can be carried out with the promptness and efficiency that compliance with the deadlines required by the census schedule demands.”
“Consequently, it is appropriate to authorize the Chief of the Cabinet of Ministers to delegate to the Minister of Economy, the powers that are his own, agreed by article 9 of the Regulation of the Contracting Regime of the National Administration”, they explained in the Decree.
The census date had already been set in mid-August during a meeting led by Alberto Fernandez in the Bicentennial Museum next to the Census Committee presided over by Guzmán, the head of INDEC, Marco Lavagna.
Some changes in the modality of the operation
After that meeting, it was also reported that for the first time this population survey “will be carried out under the definition of ‘entitlement census’, so people will be counted where they usually reside”, that is, where they spend most of their time during the week.
Also, the operating will be bimodal, therefore, citizens will have the opportunity to complete the data online or through face-to-face interviews. On the one hand, the classic territorial sweep will be carried out, on the other, a digital application will be used, called e-CENSUS, which will be compatible with different devices and will allow a pre-census to be carried out.
The main novelty of the questionnaire is the inclusion of the DNI of the members of the household, key for the integration of census information and administrative records. It will be the basis for the construction of the Statistical Population Registry.
“The protection of the information will be guaranteed through a strict computer security protocol that will store the data collected in the ARSAT services, with the identity numbers of the encrypted people”Government sources explained.
Another novelty will be the incorporation, for the entire population, the possibility of responding to ethnic self-recognition – indigenous peoples and Afro-descendants – and self-perception of gender identity.