eleventh session of the Committee on Statistics
The Committee on Statistics held its eleventh
session in Bangkok from 24 to 26 November 1998.
The meeting was opened by His Excellency Air
Chief Marshal Somboon Rahong, Minister of the
Prime Minister's Office, Government of Thailand.
The Executive Secretary of ESCAP and the Minister
addressed the Committee.
The session was attended by representatives
of the following 33 members and associate members
of ESCAP: Australia; Bangladesh; Brunei Darussalam;
China; Fiji; France; French Polynesia; Hong
Kong, China; India; Indonesia; Islamic Republic
of Iran; Japan; Lao People's Democratic Republic;
Macau; Malaysia; Federated States of Micronesia;
Mongolia; Nepal; New Caledonia; New Zealand;
Pakistan; Papua New Guinea; Philippines; Republic
of Korea; Russian Federation; Singapore; Sri
Lanka; Thailand; Turkey; United Kingdom of Great
Britain and Northern Ireland; United States
of America; Vanuatu and Viet Nam.
Hungary, Peru and Sweden also attended.
The session was attended by the Director of
the Statistics Division of the Department for
Economic and Social Affairs in New York. Many
other bodies were also represented, including
the United Nations Children's Fund, United Nations
Development Fund for Women, United Nations Development
Programme, United Nations Environment Programme,
and United Nations Population Fund.
Several specialized agencies including the International
Labour Organization, Food and Agriculture Organization
of the United Nations, United Nations Educational,
Scientific and Cultural Organization, World
Health Organization, United Nations Industrial
Development Organization, and the World Bank
Representatives of the Asian Development Bank,
the Economic Cooperation Organization, the Organization
for Economic Cooperation and Development and
the Pacific Community also attended the Committee
session along with representatives of the Statistical
Institute for Asia and the Pacific.
The main items on the Committee's agenda were:
Review of the
implementation of the recommendations of the
Committee at its ninth and tenth sessions.
Review of the report
of the Bureau.
Review of the report
of the Working Group of Statistical Experts.
Review of statistical
activities in the region.
Discussions on issues
relating to the Statistical Institute for
Asia and the Pacific, including the Reports
of the Governing Board.
Review of statistical
matters arising from and inputs to major global
and regional meetings.
Discussions on statistical
development challenges at the turn of the
century: effects of the financial crisis on
Discussions on information
resources and technology:
management: successes and challenges;
applications in the national statistical
service and in the public sector.
Review and discussions
on the programme of work in statistics, 1998-1999
and 2000-2001, including the development of
an integrated presentation of work programmes.
Discussion of other
matters and election of the Bureau.
The Committee session was presided over by
Mr Frederich W.H. Ho (Hong Kong, China) who
was assisted by the Committee's vice-chairpersons
and Mr Alejandrino A. Vicente (Philippines)
and Ms Ch. Davaasuren (Mongolia) as rapporteur
and adjunct rapporteur, respectively. Towards
the end of the session, the following were elected
as the Committee's incoming Bureau:
Term of office on the Bureau expiring in 2000
of office on the Bureau expiring in 2002
Owing to length constraints, only a concise
summary of the discussions at the meeting and
the list of the recommendations addressed to
the Commission at its next session are reported
Readers will be able to access a wide set of
documents (all the documents presented by the
secretariat, country papers and the full report
of the Committee) by visiting the Statistics
Division's Web site at the following Internet
Summary of the discussions of the meeting
The Committee arrived at a number of major
conclusions and decisions which are enumerated
below. It decided to review all its recommendations
after a maximum of four years with a view to
their revalidation, reformulation or suppression.
The Committee examined the reports of its Bureau,
the Working Group of Statistical Experts, the
secretariat and the Statistical Institute for
Asia and the Pacific (SIAP) on various aspects
of statistical activities in the region.
It urged the United Nations Population Fund
(UNFPA) to continue to devote an advisory post
in the Pacific entirely to population statistics,
and asked ESCAP and SIAP to collaborate in organizing
training activities for the 2000 round of population
censuses. The Committee commended SIAP
for pursuing the new directions charted by its
Governing Board and urged countries to consider
increasing their contributions to the Institute.
It also recommended that ESCAP strengthen its
cooperation with subregional organizations for
the promotion of statistical development in
In recognizing that one of its important functions
was to generate consensus on policy-oriented
issues which could also serve as input to international
forums like the United Nations Statistical Commission,
the Committee asked the secretariat to strengthen
its role as a conduit between the regional statistical
community and such forums. At the current
session, the Committee discussed three major
topics which the Statistical Commission would
be considering. It generally welcomed
a draft set of guiding principles in technical
cooperation in statistics, agreeing that they
should be taken as a guide rather than a set
of strict rules. It reaffirmed the
importance of the Fundamental Principles of
Official Statistics and generally agreed that
case studies of good practices in official statistics
were a useful way of illustrating how the Principles
might be put into operation. It also expressed
interest in improving data on poverty measurement,
especially at subnational levels.
The Committee noted that the demand for additional
data arising out of the recent financial crisis,
coupled with a decline in budgetary allocation
to statistical services, posed special challenges
to national statistical offices. It was considered
important to strengthen cooperation among such
offices through staff exchange programmes and
networking. The Committee expressed caution
about the benefit to be gained from the more
stringent reporting standards proposed by the
International Monetary Fund in the wake of the
In discussing information technology issues,
the Committee called for close cooperation between
donors and recipients, and for coordination
among donors, to ensure that the technology
matched the real needs and circumstances of
statistical offices. The slow progress
in tackling the year 2000 (Y2K) problem in computers
prompted the Committee to urge government departments
to maintain a high level of awareness and persist
with remedial action.
The Committee concurred with the 2000-2001
work programme priorities identified by the
secretariat and agreed on an order of priority
among the five elements in the programme.
Major conclusions and decisions of which
the Commission should take note
The Committee decided
that all its recommendations should be reviewed
after a maximum period of four years (i.e.,
after two Committee sessions) with a view
to their revalidation, reformulation or suppression.
Given that one important
function of the Committee was to generate
consensus on policy-oriented issues which
could also serve as input to such international
forums as the United Nations Statistical Commission,
the Committee asked the secretariat to strengthen
its role as a conduit between the regional
statistical community and such forums.
with appreciation that the United Nations
Population Fund (UNFPA) had strengthened national
census-taking capacities in previous census
rounds, the Committee noted that UNFPA funding
priorities had shifted and that interventions
would need to be made at key forums if
UNFPA were to increase its level of funding
for the coming census decade.
The Committee urged
UNFPA to continue to devote an advisory post
in the UNFPA/CST (Country Support Team) in
Suva entirely to population statistics.
Noting that a number
of international statistical organizations
were at various stages of developing their
own databases, the Committee recommended that
those activities should be coordinated, and
that ESCAP take advantage of those developments
The Committee recommended
that ESCAP should strengthen further its cooperation
with subregional organizations for the promotion
of statistical development in the region.
The Committee commended
the Statistical Institute for Asia and the
Pacific (SIAP) for implementing its new directions
as approved by the Governing Board and agreed
that its programme of courses focused on the
training needs of the region.
The Committee welcomed
the increased collaboration initiated by SIAP
with the national statistical offices and
relevant international organizations and agencies
in the implementation of its training activities.
The Committee emphasized
that SIAP training courses should continue
to be demand-driven and suggested that members
and associate members should facilitate the
process by providing information on their
The Committee urged
countries to review their contributions to
SIAP, and to pay contributions which had been
pledged. The Committee also asked countries
to consider increasing their contributions
to the Institute, and urged countries which
were not making the minimum contributions
according to the guidelines set by the Commission
to do so.
The Committee suggested,
in the light of likely reduced technical assistance
from traditional donors, that SIAP and the
Statistics Division of ESCAP should collaborate
to organize relevant training activities for
the year 2000 round of population censuses,
which was a very important activity for the
national statistical offices.
whose national statistical offices had established
training facilities offered to collaborate
with SIAP in the organization of training
activities under the Institute's outreach
The Committee generally
welcomed the draft set of guiding principles
in technical cooperation for statistics that
was to be considered by the United Nations
Statistical Commission. It agreed that the
principles should be taken as a guide rather
than as a set of strict rules.
The Committee emphasized
that for the success of technical cooperation,
political commitment was necessary, though
not sufficient; relevant statistical programmes
that ensured capacity-building and institutionalization
of activities were also crucial.
The Committee reaffirmed
the importance of the Fundamental Principles
of Official Statistics and generally
agreed that case studies of good practices
in official statistics were a good way of
illustrating how the Principles might be operationalized.
The Committee expressed
interest in improving data on poverty measurement,
especially at subnational levels, and welcomed
the organization by ESCAP in the first half
of 1999 of a workshop on poverty statistics.
The Committee noted
that the demand for additional relevant data
arising out of the recent financial crisis
in Asia, coupled with a decline in budgetary
allocation to statistical services, posed
special challenges to national statistical
offices (NSOs). The Committee noted however
that those challenges were not confined
to the so-called crisis countries.
While noting the value
of statistical standards, the Committee expressed
caution about the benefit to be gained from
the more stringent reporting standards proposed
by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in
the wake of the current Asian financial crisis,
given the potential to divert statistical
resources from other areas of national concern.
The Committee considered
it important to strengthen cooperation among
NSOs of countries in financial crisis, such
as through staff exchange programmes and networking.
While developing countries
were understandably willing to accept
technology assistance in-kind and related
advice on implementation, the Committee called
for close cooperation between donors
and recipients on the one hand, and for coordination
among donors on the other, to ensure that
the technology matched the real needs and
circumstances of statistical offices.
Noting that human resource
development in the area of information technology
(IT) was one of the keys for effective adoption
of IT in national statistical offices, the
Committee requested the secretariat and SIAP
to investigate the possibility of organizing
training on database development, in particular
in data modelling and data warehousing.
Although the Committee
had no basis of estimating the overall year
2000 (Y2K) problem preparedness level
in the region, the slow progress in many quarters
prompted it to urge government departments
to maintain a high level of awareness and
to persist with remedial action throughout
the remaining 13 months of the century.
The Committee concurred
with the 2000-2001 work programme priorities
identified by the secretariat in document
E/ESCAP/STAT.11/15 and agreed with the order
of priority assigned by the Bureau among the
five programme elements.
The Committee discussed
its experience with the three-day biennial
duration stipulated under the new conference
structure adopted by the Commission in 1997.
It took note of the innovations introduced
and efforts made to attempt to complete discussions
satisfactorily within the time available,
and of the preponderance of views expressed
in favour of a somewhat longer duration.
The Committee decided to evaluate the situation
carefully at the conclusion of its next session
in 2000 and to report to the Commission accordingly
if it felt the three-day format unworkable.
of National Accounts: Implementation of the1993
Bangkok, 12-23 October
A workshop was jointly organized
by ESCAP and the United Nations Statistics Division
(UNSD) at the United Nations Conference Centre
in Bangkok, from 12 to 23 October 1998,
under a technical assistance project of the
Netherlands Government and with additional funding
and technical support from UNSD.
Attendance of some participants was funded
under technical assistance projects of the Asian
Development Bank, while several countries sent
participants at their own expense. The workshop
aimed to assist countries in implementing the
1993 System of National Accounts through:
Discussion of various
elements embodied in the 1993 SNA;
Assessment of data
requirements and means to bridge data gaps;
Development of a work
programme (1998-2003) to implement the 1993
SNA by phases.
Some 69 participants and observers attended the
workshop from selected countries and areas in
the region, namely: Bangladesh (2), Bhutan (1),
Brunei Darussalam (1), China (1), Hong Kong, China
(3), India (1), Indonesia (1), Islamic Republic
of Iran (3), Macau (1), Malaysia (3), Nepal (2),
Pakistan (1), Philippines (3), Republic of Korea
(2), Singapore (2), Sri Lanka (1), and Thailand
(41, including observers).
With the assistance of resource persons from
UNSD, the International Monetary Fund (IMF),
ESCAP, the Food and Agriculture Organization
of the United Nations (FAO) and the Central
Bureau of Statistics, Indonesia, concepts and
compilation practices based on the 1993 SNA
were discussed. Participants shared their challenges
and experiences in the implementation of the
Participants agreed on the following recommendations:
Implementation of the
1993 SNA will be pursued based on the milestone
Existing series will
continue in parallel with the 1993 SNA implementation;
Establishment and enterprise
data will need to be reconciled;
Compilation of regional
and quarterly gross domestic product (GDP)
will remain priority activities;
Illegal activities will
be incorporated in compilation as far as the
data will allow. Financial Intermediation
Services Indirectly Measured (FISIM) will
be incorporated but the estimation approach
will be dependent on data availability and
the outcome of studies;
Serving Households (NPISH) will remain integrated
in the household sector until classification
issues are resolved and data are available;
Valuables and intangible
assets will be incorporated only if measurement
approaches and data collection are established
Chain-based price estimation
will be done on a trial basis and implementation
will depend on the outcome;
Cultivated assets and
livestock will be incorporated as capital
depending upon availability of data and acceptable
Other value changes
and financial derivatives will need further
As a follow-up of the workshop, participants
agreed to help each other through the conduct
of special studies of common concerns, and to
provide assistance and share knowledge through
various modalities such as the Internet, workshops,
seminars and technical cooperation activities.
Participants volunteered to undertake specific
studies on the implementation of their programmes
and to share results with other countries in
of Information Technology in National Statistical
Taejon, Republic of Korea,
15-18 December 1998
A seminar on Application
of Information Technology in National Statistical
Offices, organized jointly by the Economic and
Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP)
and the National Statistical Office of the Republic
of Korea, was held from 15 to 18 December 1998
at Taejon, Republic of Korea.
The Government of the Republic of Korea provided
financial assistance for the Seminar through
the Korea-ESCAP Cooperation Fund. The Australian
Bureau of Statistics provided a resource person
for the Seminar.
The Seminar was attended by 39 representatives
of the following 22 members and associate members
of ESCAP: Armenia; Australia; Bangladesh;
Bhutan; China; Fiji; Hong Kong, China; Indonesia;
Kazakhstan; Lao People's Democratic Republic;
Macau; Malaysia; Maldives; Mongolia; Myanmar;
Nepal; Republic of Korea; Samoa; Sri Lanka;
Tonga; Vanuatu; and Viet Nam. The Seminar was
also attended by representatives of the Asian
Development Bank (ADB), the Secretariat of the
Pacific Community (SPC), and the Statistical
Institute for Asia and the Pacific (SIAP).
The meeting was opened by Mr Young-Dae Yoon,
Commissioner of the National Statistical Office
of the Republic of Korea. In welcoming the participants,
he noted that their attendance demonstrated
the importance to governments and organizations
of the utilization of modern information technology
in producing and disseminating official statistics.
The Republic of Korea was showing strong signs
of recovery from the recent financial crisis
which had affected many countries of the region.
The crisis had boosted the demand for statistics
but had also impeded their production.
Exploiting current technological innovations
would help national statistical offices overcome
the impact of the crisis by focusing on credibility,
customer orientation, convenience for users,
and cooperation with international organizations.
The Director of the Statistics Division delivered
a message from the Executive Secretary of ESCAP.
The Executive Secretary expressed his deep gratitude
to the Government of the Republic of Korea and
especially the National Statistical Office for
their generous support in making the Seminar
possible. In his message the Executive Secretary
addressed several fields of information technology,
with special attention paid to the expanded
possibilities offered by the technology to national
statistical and other government offices.
The Seminar elected Ms Roszaini binte Omar
(Malaysia) as Chairperson, Mr Le Manh Hung (Viet
Nam) as Vice-Chairperson, and Mr Shiu Raj (Fiji)
as Rapporteur. The seminar dealt with the following
The status of information technology in
national statistical offices
The Seminar reviewed the status of information
technology (IT) in national statistical offices
(NSOs) on the basis of country/area papers presented,
and noted several general trends in developing
The Seminar observed that small statistical
offices had all of their data operations running
on PC, which were often connected to a local
area network. It recognized that they had limited
possibilities to develop applications in-house
or to use off-the-shelf applications which were
expensive and difficult to set up, such as data
warehousing and data mining tools. However,
the Seminar found no reason why even the small
offices should not strive to use the latest
applicable IT to improve the quality of their
data and services.
The Seminar recommended that NSOs should identify
bottlenecks in statistical information systems
and IT management and develop action plans to
address the problem areas. It emphasized the
need to review non-computerized processes and
organizational structures critically in connection
with IT development projects. The Seminar heard
the experiences of several countries in involving
senior management in IT development. The modalities
used included the establishment of high-level
information resource management committees,
computer strategy groups and project steering
Derivation of full benefits from information
technology in national statistical offices
The Seminar discussed ways of increasing the
benefits from information technology on the
basis of the paper "Development of best practices
on application of information technology in
national statistical offices" (STAT/ITNSO/1),
and a presentation made by its author, Michael
Page-Hanify of the Australian Bureau of Statistics
The Seminar agreed that by adopting best practices
on application of IT, which had worked well
elsewhere, NSOs could avoid mistakes and wastage
caused by piecemeal development. Best
practices were more effective if written down
and communicated to everyone within the NSO
and to external stakeholders with an interest
in the NSO's effective operation. The Seminar
noted that best practices were neither a vehicle
providing advice on applying particular technologies
(that were evolving rapidly) nor a straitjacket
tying an NSO to a particular IT path irrespective
of its size, but an IT management tool with
long-term applicability and a contributor to
achieving organizational goals.
Networking solutions for national statistical
The Seminar considered the item on the basis
of document STAT/ITNSO/2, "A study on the design
proposal for a unified statistical information
system using metadata modeling", prepared by
the National Statistical Office of the Republic
of Korea, and a presentation by a representative
of IBM Korea entitled "Business intelligence:
turning information into insight".
Paper STAT/ITNSO/2 described how the NSO and
other statistical agencies in the Republic of
Korea had started to disseminate data via the
Internet, using independent dissemination systems
based on their own IT platforms.
The presentation by the IBM representative
traced the process of turning data into information
for decision-making, and featured data warehousing
and data mining, which could be described as
extracting previously unknown, comprehensible
and actionable information from large databases
and using it to make crucial business decisions.
Data mining was an iterative process and could
involve verification of a hypothesis or the
discovery of hidden relationships within large
datasets. Various data mining techniques and
applications were described.
The Seminar was informed that data mining
differed from conventional statistical analytical
techniques chiefly in the ability to handle
very large databases, the use of artificial
intelligence-based mathematical algorithms
as well as statistical techniques, and better
visualization and interpretation properties.
It was explained that data warehousing was not
a prerequisite for data mining, but made it
considerably easier and more productive.
Concerns were expressed about the cost and feasibility
of data mining techniques in many of the countries
represented at the meeting. The Seminar noted
that to obtain full benefits from data mining,
several old datasets should be utilized, but
that would imply a commonality of definitions
across statistical collections (similar to that
being proposed in document STAT/ITNSO/2) which
would usually take time and effort to realize.
Evolving data collection techniques and
The Seminar based its discussions on the agenda
item on two papers: "Applications of information
technology to tasks of Korea National Statistical
Office (STAT/ITNSO/3) by Jung-Jin Lee,
Department of Statistics, Soongsil University
and Won-Hwan Park, National Statistical Office,
Republic of Korea, and Information technologies
as applied to the employment survey in Hong
Kong, China (STAT/ITNSO/4) by Anthony
Mak Shiu-kwai, Census and Statistics Department,
Hong Kong, China.
The Seminar decided on the following set of
recommendations, which were framed to be considered
jointly by both senior management and senior
IT staff of the organization. The Seminar
recognized that, depending on the current state
of IT development of the respective NSOs, the
time-frame in which implementation of the recommendations
could commence would vary. Finally, the
way the recommendations would be adopted depended
largely on the role the IT department had within
the organization, but as a minimum, the IT department
should formulate a set of "best practice"
policies applicable to their organization.
Best practices in applying information
technology in national statistical offices
A high-level committee
consisting of senior management and senior
IT staff should be formed to consider matters
of strategic significance concerning data
and information management and related policy.
An IT strategic plan
should be developed by senior IT staff which
takes into account the overall mission and
goals of the organization. This document should
be used as a firm guideline by the IT department.
It would enable the NSO to better integrate
data across statistical areas, reduce respondent
burden, ensure less costly means of data collection,
formulate financial requirements, and so on.
The plan would be endorsed by the committee
formed under recommendation (1).
Official IT standards
on the development of application systems
need to be established.
The NSOs should streamline
the usage of software, reduce the different
versions of existing software being used and
put in place a policy for the acquisition
of new software and equipment. It is recognized
that financial and/or logistical constraints
may not permit immediate implementation of
A disaster recovery
plan should be developed; the plan should
formulate a policy on the procedures needed
to ensure a timely resumption of services
in the event of a major breakdown in the IT
should be established with major data providers
(e.g., other government agencies) to coordinate
the data collection process by applying agreed
The NSOs should play
a more active role in defining the terms of
reference of technical cooperation, ensuring
sustainable skills transfer with objectives
in line with the organization's policies.
The training of subject-matter
statisticians in IT should be initiated and
enhanced so that more effective processing
is done at the workstation level. The training
should be focused and adjusted to the tasks
and responsibilities at the various levels.
The NSOs should implement
a plan to retain IT staff by way of a carefully
developed training programme geared to upgrade
skills, combined with an active programme
aimed at better job satisfaction.
NSOs should follow the
existing trend to implement LANs so as to
share IT resources as efficiently as possible
and also enable more advanced data sharing.
NSOs should pay greater
attention to security requirements for data,
which will continue to increase with extra
accessibility. They should note that
to secure an internal network having outside
electronic access, a firewall, audited externally
where possible, is the only reliable method
of avoiding unwanted intrusions and possible
introduction of viruses. For smaller
NSOs where the cost of a firewall is not practical,
a dedicated "stand alone" PC could provide
a viable alternative.
filing of documents, backup and archiving
procedures should be implemented using modern
Data holdings within
the agency should be identified and documented
and metadata developed with standard classifications
to ensure that efficient data management is
practised with prompt information delivery.
This will assist commonality of definitions
across the various collections.
An inventory should
be made of all hardware and associated software,
and of individuals' access to software.
This will provide for a smooth upgrade of
software as well as keeping users fully informed.
The possibilities should
be explored of organizing electronic communication
within the NSOs by implementing an electronic
network. This would enable efficient
communication and help to initiate electronic
Emerging trends in data
capture techniques, such as the use of mobile
computers and electronic communication, should
be considered when developing new systems
or redeveloping existing systems.
The possibility of organizing
electronic data dissemination via the use
of advanced IT should be explored, including
CD-ROMs, static or dynamic web pages etc.
The approach would depend on the volume of
data to be disseminated.
When providing IT services,
the focus should be on user requirements with
solution which is stable, reliable and secure,
as well as easy to use. IT staff should
be closely involved with clients and, wherever
possible, should be located in the user area
during the development phase to assist them
in familiarizing themselves with the organization's
Levels of service should
be agreed on with internal stakeholders in
order to improve response to users.
Service could cover timeliness, outages, response
times and general support.
For larger NSOs, a permanent
help desk should be established to assist
in providing a better service for user queries.
The service would be facilitated by the formation
of a solutions database that the help desk
staff populate with the resolution of queries.
A local network of IT
professionals should be developed for cooperation
and exchange of views on current IT issues.
The Seminar also recommended
that ESCAP explore the possibility of mobilizing
funds from various donor agencies to provide IT
infrastructure for NSOs in need. It additionally
recommended that similar seminars be organized
more regularly with IT professionals within the
region. ESCAP was urged continually to advocate
efficient utilization of IT in NSOs and to encourage
developed countries to accelerate their help to
A particular focus was given to the progress
in handling the year 2000 problem in NSOs on
the basis of country papers and oral reports
given by the participants.
Several participants had attended the SIAP/ESCAP
Workshop on the Year 2000 Problem in Computers
and Strategic Issues for National Statistical
Offices, held at Bangkok in June 1998, and reported
on follow-up actions to that Workshop.
The Seminar noted that the Workshop and its
recommendations (which are available in hard
copy and on the ESCAP Web site) had been useful
for NSOs in increasing awareness about and expediting
action on the Y2K problem.
The Seminar noted that most countries had established
committees to coordinate and monitor the resolution
of the Y2K problem at national level and sometimes
also at the local government level. The Seminar
was told that many governments had approved
additional funding for Y2K projects on a priority
basis, while some countries had to cope with
the problem within their normal budget frames.
While the compliance of critical systems had
to be the priority, the Seminar reminded governments
to ensure that valuable old data holdings with
the year coded with two digits were protected
from corruption, now while still archived and
later when read into compliant systems.
Those readers who do not have access to the
Web but are interested in the full report as
published in our Web site can request it from
on Human Resources Accounts
A seminar on human resources accounts was
held at Seoul, from 8 to 10 December 1998, under
the sponsorship of the National Statistical
Office of the Republic of Korea and the United
Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
The seminar was divided into three sessions:
Human resources accounts and its analysis in
the Republic of Korea; Alternative and complementary
approaches to socio-economic analysis; and Measurement
of paid and unpaid work (ongoing efforts and
future directions). Seminar participants, from
several national statistical offices, the Bank
of Korea, various government agencies and academic
institutions, were from Australia, China, India,
the Netherlands, Peru, Philippines, Venezuela,
the United Nations Statistics Division (UNSD),
ESCAP and the Statistical Institute for Asia
and the Pacific (SIAP).
The seminar demonstrated the importance of
developing the satellite accounts of the household
sector focusing on various elements affecting
development of human resources. Among the areas
covered in the development of household accounts
of the Republic of Korea were expenditure for
improving human resources, human resources in
production, and the measurement of economic
and non-economic activities of household members.
Attempts to capture the activities of household
members through time-use surveys were
introduced at the seminar.
of ESCAP Statistics Division Staff
Mr Andrew J. Flatt, Director, Statistics
Division, undertook missions as follows:
Manila (1-3 October):
To attend the meeting of heads of statistics
offices of Asian economies in financial crisis
organized by the Asian Development Bank with
financial support from the World Bank;
Hobart (31 October-7
November): To represent ESCAP at the seventeenth
session of the FAO Asian and Pacific Commission
on Agricultural Statistics (APCAS), 2-6 November
of Korea (13-19 December): Together
with Mr Ilpo Survo, Programme Officer,
to prepare for, organize and service the Seminar
on Application of Information Technology in
National Statistical Offices, 15-18 December
Mr M. K. Siddiqui, Chief, Statistics
Development Section, undertook a mission to:
Beijing (28 October-1
November): To serve as a resource person in
the Ad hoc Expert Group Meeting on Appropriate
Information Technology for Accessing Population
Information, 29-31 October 1998, and to present
a paper entitled "Utilization of information
technology in statistics data collection,
processing and dissemination".
Ms Heidi R. Arboleda, Regional Adviser
on National Accounts, provided advisory services
Macau (3-13 November):
To provide advisory services on national accounts,
particularly on the compilation of expenditure
Seoul (8-10 December):
To act as a resource person at the Seminar
on Human Resources Accounts.
Mr M.N. Ozsever, ESCAP Adviser on Population
Data Processing and Database Management with
the UNFPA/CST in Bangkok, visited countries
Viet Nam (7-14
October): To assist the General Statistical
Office in developing a coding manual,
editing specifications and related programmes
for the pilot census conducted in September
1998; and to discuss management and quality
Mongolia (19 October-4
November): To assist the National Statistical
Office in developing the data processing system
for the 1998 reproductive health survey (RHS);
Papua New Guinea (28 November - 12 December): To assist the
National Statistical Office in reviewing the
2000 census questionnaire and data processing
for the Provincial Data System, and to conduct
IMPS training for the personnel of the Population
and Social Statistics Division.
Mr L.H. Lewis, ESCAP Adviser on Population
Statistics with the UNFPA/CST in Suva, visited
the following countries:
October): To test modifications made to the
model forms following earlier pretests and
to provide an opportunity to bring into sharper
focus issues related to the suitability of
the forms for coding and data entry;
Marshall Islands (10-16 October): To provide the final opportunity
to test the integrated processes of data collection,
coding and data entry;
Papua New Guinea (28 October - 12 November): To participate
as a team member in the 2000 Census Design
Mission sponsored by AusAID;
Fiji (16-21 November):
To participate as a resource person in the
regional Programme Management Workshop for
Pacific islands Project Coordinators.
Ms Luisa T. Engracia, ESCAP Adviser
on Population Statistics with the UNFPA/CST
in Almaty, visited the following countries:
October): To present and discuss the Country
Population Assessment to the government and
to initiate the process of formulating the
country population programme for 2000-2004;
Rome (26-30 October):
To participate in the 1998 UNFPA-sponsored
Thematic Workshop on Population, Poverty and
Environment, organized jointly by FAO and
ILO at FAO Headquarters in Rome.
December): To participate in a subregional
workshop on the development of country programmes
for the six Central Asian regions.
Mr Roberto Pagan, Associate Statistician,
Statistical Information Services Section, undertook
the following mission:
New York (7-15
December): To (1) participate in a Special
Development Programme for new Professionals
of the United Nations (7-11 December) and
(2) discuss issues concerning demographic
and environment statistics, with particular
focus on dissemination practices, with officials
of the United Nations Statistics Division
released by the Statistics Division
for Asia and the Pacific, vol. XXVIII, No.
4 (December 1998).
to the Statistics Division
Mr Lu Haitian,
Assistant to the Representative, Permanent
Mission of China to ESCAP, Bangkok
Ms Sheila Macrae,
UNFPA Representative to Thailand, Bangkok
Ms Imelda Henkin,
Director, Asia and the Pacific Division, UNFPA,
Mr Vu Duy Man,
Project Coordinator, Computer Software and
Support for Population Activities, Statistics
Division, United Nations, New York
Mr Malik Altaf Hussain
Agral, Deputy Secretary General, Economic
Cooperation Organization Secretariat(ECO),
Mr Nurbek Elebayev,
Director, Economic Research and Statistics,
Mr Fazli Sak, Programme
Officer on Statistics, ECO, Tehran
Mr Aamir Ghani Mir,
Database Officer, ECO, Tehran
Mr Peter Harper,
Assistant Statistician, National Accounts
Branch, Australian Bureau of Statistics, Canberra.
Mr Laurence (Laurie) Lewis, ESCAP
Adviser on Population Statistics with the UNFPA/CST
in Suva retired from service on 31 December
He joined ESCAP in December 1980 and has made
a major contribution to the statistical development
of the Asian and Pacific region. We hope to
carry an interview with Laurie in a forthcoming
issue of the Statistical Newsletter.
Our readers are informed that the national
statistical office of China has changed its
English name from "State Statistical Bureau"
to "National Bureau of Statistics"(NBS) as of
1 February 1999; Moreover, changes of titles
in the civil service system, in the English
language, have also taken place.
Director of Department
Director-General of Department
Deputy Director of Department
Chief of Division
Director of Division
Deputy Chief of Division
Deputy Director of Division
The NBS has confirmed that its functions are
the same as those of the former SSB, and that
the NBS will maintain all the rights and responsibilities
of the SSB.