Radios in the Gulf region celebrate World Radio Day 2021

Each year on February 13, UNESCO celebrate the World Radio Day. Proclaimed in 2011 by the Member States of UNESCO, and adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in 2012 as an International Day, the World Radio Day (WRD) celebrates radio as a powerful medium for celebrating humanity in all its diversity and constitutes a platform for democratic discourse.
At the global level, radio remains the most widely consumed medium. This unique ability to reach out the widest audience means radio can shape a society’s experience of diversity, stand as an arena for all voices to speak out, be represented and heard. Radio stations should serve diverse communities, offering a wide variety of programs, viewpoints and content, and reflect the diversity of audiences in their organizations and operations.
On the occasion of World Radio Day 2021 (WRD 2021), UNESCO calls on radio stations to celebrate this event’s 10th anniversary and the more than 110 years of radio. 
This edition of WRD is placed under the theme “New World – New Radio: Evolution, Innovation, Connection”:
EVOLUTION. The world changes, radio evolves. 
This sub-theme refers to the resilience of the radio, to its sustainability ;
INNOVATION. The world changes, radio adapts and innovate. 
Radio has had to adapt to new technologies to remain the go-to medium of mobility, accessible everywhere and to everyone;
CONNECTION. The world changes, radio connects.
This sub-theme highlights radio’s services to our society—natural disasters, socio-economic crises, epidemics, etc.
UNESCO GCC and Yemen office proposed to its partner’s in Kuwait, Qatar and Yemen two activities to celebrate this year edition:
Activity 1 - Social Media Campaign: “What does radio mean to you?” UNESCO invites radio listeners to register themselves on an up to 2 minutes videos or audio recording, explaining how the use of radio has impacted (or not) their lives in the recent years and especially in the COVID 19 era.
Activity 2 - The evolution of radio in the Gulf through the eyes of a senior radio professional. UNESCO invites senior radio professionals from the Gulf region to share their experience with radio and how its use, audience, and way of working has changed throughout the years. Those personal narratives will be converted into web-articles that will be shared online, on the UNESCO GCC and Yemen website as well as on its social media.



Sout Al Khaleej, Oryx FM, Qatar Radio and QBS radio shared through their social media and on their broadcast the messages produced by UNESCO to celebrate WRD.


  • Sout al Khaleej (Based in Qatar – Broadcasted in Qatar, Kuwait, Oman, Switzerland, United Kingdom, Austria, Iraq, and Turkey)



Sout Al Khaleej is an Arabic radio station established in Qatar in 2002. The station propose programs covering politics, economy, culture, fashion and entertainment. It is broadcasted in eight countries in the world and aims at preserving, sharing and promoting the Gulf culture.

On the occasion of the World Radio Day 2021, Raja Salman, Head of Programs Department, under the supervision of Mr. Salem Al-Mansouri, prepared and dedicated several programs (“Taghareid”, “Turbiyat” and “Aamer Tallalal”) to celebrate the day, inviting special guests to highlight the importance of radio in raising awareness and spreading culture as well as underline the many challenges that radio overcame through time.


  • Oryx FM (Qatar)

To celebrate the 10th birthday of WRD 2021 that corresponded as well to the 10th birthday of Oryx FM, the radio interviewed Mabrouk Ziani, Director and Founder of Oryx FM, to tell about his experience of radio in Qatar.

Oryx FM was established in 2011 in Qatar as a unique project of building a francophone radio in the Gulf region. 10 years later, Oryx is still the only francophone radio in the region. Mabrouk Ziani explained that the listeners adhered to the project as soon as the radio was launched, despite the fact that Qatar was mainly an English speaking country and that Qatar was not yet associated member of the International Organization of La Francophonie. Nevertheless, Qatar was already a very Francophile country, which helped in the creation of the radio. Since its creation the radio is deeply rooted in Qatar and represents its diversity, Oryx FM is a Qatari radio that speaks about Qatar and its actuality. Through time, Oryx FM was able to evolve while keeping this specificity, key to its success. The radio adapted to new technology and adopted the use of social media to broaden its reach (IP studio, filmed radio).   

While talking about the future of Oryx FM, Mabrouk Ziani explained that the radio will keep on adapting to new technology and make the best use of it, while aiming at expanding the reach of the radio for it to spread out to the whole region, making Oryx FM an international Qatari radio.

To listen to the full interview:

Focus on Yemen

In Yemen, at least 20 radios participated to the celebration of the 10th anniversary of the World Radio Day by sharing public announcements and organizing dedicated events.

Using the #GCC_WRD, a number of Yemeni radios shared photos and videos on social media, showcasing their celebration of Word Radio Day as well as their special programs and some messages from their listeners. 

Other Radio Stations invited highly-respected and socially popular media figures and featured radio programs that highlighted the role of the radio and its impact in informing the public, raising awareness, increasing knowledge, and continuing to be the public’s support in contributing to improving life.

Some Radios, like Alwan FM and Shabwa Radio, seized the opportunity and momentum of this day to recognize the hard work of their staff and issue certificates of appreciation. 

Radio Roya FM, a Youth community radio based in Hadramout was particularly active in organizing program and sharing videos on the day of celebration as well as throughout the following week.





UNESCO GCC and Yemen would like to thank all the radio and journalists that participated to this year celebration and shared with their audiences the values of radio:

Sout Al Khaleej, Oryx FM, QBS radio, Yemen FM, Hawa Al Yemen FM, Somarah FM, Delta FM, Hodeidah Radio, Ibb Radio, Radio Royah FM, Alamal FM, Nahda FM, Bandar Aden Radio, Lana FM, Mareb Radio, Alittihadyah Radio, Sayoun Radio, Alwan FM, Yemen Times FM, Panorama FM, Watani FM, Adaniah FM.

UNESCO GCC and Yemen office is also thanking Faida Al Yousfi and Abdulkarim Al Shaibani who shared their radio experience in Yemen as well as Dot Notion, Record Media and Yemeni House of Music and Arts, who participated to the production of the video.