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Information on the Statistics Division of the Government of Pakistan

Government of Pakistan - Statistics Division




1. Statistics Division, is responsible for making plans and policies for statistical development and improvement of statistical infrastructure in the country. It provides solid database to the policy making bodies through the administration of General Statistics Act, 1975, The Industrial Statistics Act, 1942, The Agricultural Census Act, 1958 and the Census Ordinance, 1959 which provide the required legal cover for collection of data in different socio-economic fields all over the country.

2. Under General Statistics Act, the Secretary, Statistics -Division, has been appointed as Federal Statistics Authority while Chairman, Planning & Development Board/ Additional Chief Secretary(s) Development) of the provinces act as Provincial Statistics Authority of respective province. Under this Act, the Government has constituted a National Statistical Council with its major functions as to coordinate statistical activities; to approve priorities for filling up gaps in statistical data; to draw up schemes for avoiding duplication and to ensure economic efficient utilization of field services.

3. For collection, compilation and dissemination of statistical data in different socio-economic sectors of economy, Statistics Division is assisted by the three attached departments namely Federal Bureau of Statistics (FBS), Population Census Organization (PCO) and Agricultural Census Organization (ACO). Details relating to these attached departments are given in the subsequent paragraphs.



4. Federal Bureau of Statistics (FBS) with its headquarters at Islamabad is functioning as an attached department of the Statistics Division since 1981. Before 1981, it was a Technical Wing of Statistics Division established in 1972 while prior to1972 the said Technical Wing was known as Central Statistical Office (CSO) set up in 1950. It has its own field organizations (15 regional offices - including 4 in the provincial capitals and 20 field offices) spread all over the country for conducting censuses/ surveys and collection of data. In order to impart training to the statistical personnel working in the Federal/ Provincial agencies, a Training Wing is also functioning under FBS with its headquarters at Lahore.

5. FBS is principally a data collection agency. All statistics collected, produced and published by it emerge as a result of two important sources of information viz. primary data collection through surveys/censuses and secondary data collection i.e. from administrative records etc. Some data is also collected from federal as well as provincial government departments. Besides collection of data in different areas like price statistics, industrial statistics, trade statistics, agricultural statistics, labour force & demographic statistics, income & consumption statistics and social statistics, FBS is also responsible for preparation of the National Accounts of Pakistan.


6. The General Statistics Act, 1975 provides legal framework/cover for undertaking of censuses/ surveys and other statistical activities of FBS. The Act makes it binding on the respondents to cooperate with the statistical authorities/ statistical organizations to furnish information for statistical purposes. Industrial Statistics Act, 1942 provides legal cover for collection of industrial statistics through conducting of Census of Manufacturing Industries (CMI) by the provincial governments results of which are consolidated at national level by FBS(copies of these acts are enclosed at annex-I & II respectively).


7. Censuses & surveys' schedules/ records are not open to inspection of any person and individual information furnished in censuses & surveys' returns can not be used for any purpose other than compilation of statistics as provided in the General Statistics Act, 1975 and the Industrial Statistics Act, 1942.


8. Panels/Working Groups on different statistical subjects established under Technical Advisory Committee of the National Statistical Council are represented by the data users. These Panels/Working Groups are comprised of the members drawn from concerned federal and provincial government departments, while nonofficial members are drawn from universities, research institution and relevant organizations of private sector. Meetings of these Panels/Working Groups are held regularly, at least once in a year, to discuss relevant issues relating to the specific field of statistics and to seek their solution.


9. The local training in different statistical disciplines is provided by the Training Wing of FBS to statistics working in FBS & other statistical organizations including ACO & PCO. Foreign training facilities offered by international agencies/ foreign governments such as Statistical Institute for Asia and the Pacific (SIAP) Tokyo, International Statistical Programmes Centre (ISPC) US Bureau of Census, IMF, UN Agencies, Government of Netherlands, Govt. of UK etc are also availed by officers and staff of FBS as and when available. The senior officers of FES get training in the field of Management & economic development from National Institutes of Public Administration set by the Govt. in all the provincial capitals of the country.

10. The officers and staff of FBS are provided in-house training about census/survey procedures, concepts and contents of different forms/ questionnaires to be used prior to launching of each census/survey.


11. The print media is mobilized to project the importance of statistical activities of FBS. FBS also releases census/survey results and price statistics, foreign trade statistics as well as industrial production statistics through press releases and conferences. A census/survey publicity programme is also launched through print media to create awareness in the masses about the importance and objectives of censuses/surveys.


12. Data collected and compiled are published in the form of publications like survey/census reports, periodic statistical publications (i.e. yearbook, monthly statistical bulletin etc) and special compendiums in emerging statistical areas. The data is also supplied to users on computer diskettes on request. Print media is also used to disseminate census/survey results and other important indicators of public interest. A web site is being developed for dissemination of data on the selected statistical series.


13. FBS publications are priced documents. These are however, supplied to concerned government/semi government organizations, universities and research institutions as well as international agencies on complementary basis. The prices are fixed keeping in view the volume and contents of each publication/report. The reports/ publications are also available for sale through Manager Publications, Federal Publication Branch, University Road, Karachi and the sales counters established in FBS at Karachi and Islamabad.



14. Population Census Organization is an attached department of Statistics Division since 1978. From 1975 to 1977 it was part of the Census and Registration Organization under the Ministry of Interior. The Population Census Organization responsible for planning and execution of decennial Population and Housing Census, analysis of census data, demographic research and conducting of intercensal sample studies/surveys in related areas.


15. Pakistan has a long history of Census taking, regular decennial Population Census in the area now comprising Pakistan dates back to 1872. The first census of Pakistan was conducted in 1951, the second census was conducted in 1961, the third census took place in 1972 instead of 1971 due to political environment in the country and war with India. Like-wise the fourth census was held in March, 1981 while the fifth one due in 1991 could be held in March, 1998 due to specific circumstances.


16. The census (Population and Housing) is undertaken in the country under the legal cover of Census Ordinance, 1959. As provided in the Constitution of Pakistan, 1973, the Census(Population and Housing) is a Federal subject. The seats in the National Assembly are allocated to each Province, Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) and Federal Capital Territory on the basis of the population in accordance with the last preceding census officially published. Further distribution of funds between the Federation and the Provinces are made through National Finance Commission (NFC). NFC award is based on census figures. The quota for recruitment to Federal posts is worked out on the basis of population ratios as given by the census (copy of the census ordinance is enclosed at annex III).


17. Census schedules/records are not open to inspection of any person and individual information furnished in census returns are kept confidential and can not be used for any purpose other than compilation of statistic in aggregates as provided in the Census Ordinance, 1959.


18. Planning of census is started in consultation with data users to cater their data demands. Advisory Committee/Sub-Committees are formed with the terms of reference to consider various technical aspects of census taking and to recommend topics for formulation of census questionnaires. The Advisory Committee is comprised of experts drawn from concerned federal and provincial departments, universities, research institutions and relevant organizations of private sector. The questionnaires prepared are then pretested in the field and got approved from the Government of Pakistan before conducting the census.


19. The officers/officials of Population Census Organization are trained through in-country training programmes conducted by various Government institutions like Training wing of FBS, National Institute of Public Administration, Management and Services Division, Manpower Division, Pakistan Computer Bureau, Secretariat Training Institute etc. Similarly training facilities offered by foreign institutions such as ISPC, U.S. Bureau of the Census, Washington D.C. UN-Cairo Demographic Centre; Australian National University; SIAP, Tokyo etc. sponsored by donor agencies like USAID, UNFPA, etc. are utilized by sending PCO's officers training.

20. A core of census field staff is also trained for census work by utilizing expertise of senior officers of PCO and other sister organizations like FBS and ACO.


21. A comprehensive census publicity plan is launched through electronic and print media to create awareness about census among masses wherein importance of correct information is highlighted. It is also publicized that the wrong doers are liable to punishment or fine as provided for under the relevant sections of the Census Ordinance, 1959.


22. After conduct of the census, the provisional census results are released to the users through print as well as electronic media.

23. The information collected in the 1998 census is being published in the shape of district, provincial and national census reports. A series of research monographs on various demographic aspects such as fertility, mortality, migration and urbanization, literacy and education attainment, etc. is also planned to be published. Similarly some specific reports on specific areas are proposed to be published. In addition to the census data published in the District, Provincial and National reports, data requirements of users are also met on their request through special tabulations in computer printouts as well as on Magnetic media. The cost of such requests is however, borne by the data users themselves.


24. The census publications are priced documents. The prices are fixed keeping in view the volume and contents of every report. All these reports are made available for sale to the Manager Publications, Federal Publication. Branch, University Road, Karachi and Assistant Controller, Stationery, Forms and Publication Depot, Islamabad and Lahore. These reports can also be purchased from all Offices of Population Census Organization located at Islamabad, Lahore, Karachi, Quetta, Peshawar, Sukkur and Multan. However limited number of copies of Census Reports/ Bulletins are provided to all Federal/ Provincial Ministries, Divisional Commissioners/ Deputy Commissioners, Research Institutions and main Libraries, etc. on complimentary basis.



25.Agricultural Census Organization (ACO) was created in 1958, in the Ministry of Food & Agriculture, with the main objective to conduct the Census of Agriculture. The organization was transferred to statistics division as one of its attached departments in 1978. Since then its scope of work has continued to expand. The Agricultural Census Organization is mainly responsible for conducting decennial censuses of Agriculture and Livestock. The organization also conducts Village Census and Census of Agricultural machinery with varying periodicity. It also undertakes adhoc surveys in the field of agriculture on the request of other government departments.


26. The Agricultural Census Act, 1958 (Act No.XLI of 1958) provides the necessary legal cover for the census operations. The Act makes it binding on the respondent to cooperate with the census enumerators and furnish information on or with respect to items specified in the said Act (copy of the census act 1958 is enclosed at annex IV).


27. Secrecy of the information supplied by the respondent is ensured under the provisions of Census Act. The filled-in census schedules /questionnaires are kept confidentiaI and the source data is not accessible to the unauthorized persons/agencies. However, specific census tabulations could be provided to the user agencies after the release of census reports.


28. An Advisory Committee comprising about 50 officials and non-official members is constituted in the beginning of each census to advise the Agricultural Census Organization on various aspects of the census. The official members are drawn from the concerned Federal and Provincial government departments while non-official members are taken from the universities, research institutions and progressive farmers. At planning and preparatory stage for each major census, the views of data user agencies are obtained quite in advance on census scope and their requirements. A meeting of the Advisory Committee is convened to seek the advice of the members on census methodology, enumerating agency, quest questionnaire contents, etc. Preliminary census plans are drawn up on the recommendations of the Advisory Committee and are given a fair trial in the field to judge their suitability under the prevailing socio-economics conditions. The results of pretesting are analyzed & placed before the Advisory Committee for final consideration of the census plans.

29. The census plans are given final shape on the basis of the recommendations made by the members of the Advisory Committee and Expert Groups. The advice of the members of the Advisory Committee is also sought on the tabulation plan through which the census data is to be presented.


30. The local and foreign training facilities are availed by officers and staff of Agricultural Census Organization as and when available.

31. The officers and staff of this Organization are provided in-house training about. census procedures, concepts and contents of different forms to be used prior to each census/survey. The enumerators and their immediate supervisors are intensively trained in batches of 20-25 in census methodology, census forms and the concepts involved, at their respective sub-divisional headquarters, by census officials. The four days training for enumerators and supervisors includes first two days class room lectures ending in written test, third day in the field doing actual work, followed by revision and review of the entire training on the fourth day. Before the start of the census field operation, meetings are held in every district to brief the concerned officers on the census methodology and census programme. Arrangements for launching the census field operations are also reviewed.


32. The media including television, radio and national and regional newspapers are mobilized to project the importance of the census and its objectives. The programmes are launched with the press conference of the Minister Incharge shortly before the start of training of census enumerators. Since the census is based on sample enumeration and the enumeration work is to remain confined to the selected villages, the limited but well-thought of publicity campaign is undertaken to seek cooperation of the farming community in general and target population in particular.

33. Large size posters portraying importance of the census for national development programmes are displayed at prominent places. Handouts are issued to the newspapers at appropriate junctions. Representatives of the Press Information Department are also invited during meetings with district administration which proves very conducive for local publicity.


34. Census data is tabulated and presented at country, province, division and district levels and published in the form of Census Reports.


35. The census publications are supplied free of cost to the concerned federal and provincial government departments, universities and research institutions including other concerned national and international agencies. Besides, census publications are also provided to other government, semi-government institutions and researchers on request.

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