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Country Profile of Tonga

Main statistical agency
Main statistical agency name
Statistics Department
Web address
Position in the government
The Statistics Department, which was usually under the jurisdiction of the Hon. Minister for Finance and National Planning, has been transferred to the Prime Ministers Office and now under the jurisdiction of the Hon. Prime Minister, which effected as from 4 March 2008.
Organizational structure and finance
The Tonga Statistics Department is divided into the following divisions headed by the Government Statistician:


Economics Statistics and Statistical Surveys

Population, Social Statistics and Information Technology
Multi-annual or annual work program
Annual work plan is prepared together with the annual budget estimate.
Main duties
The functions of the Department are diverse in nature as outlined in the Statistics Act:

a. to collect, compile, analyse and disseminate statistics and related information on the activities and condition of the people and their institutions;

b. to ensure co-ordination of the operations of departments of government in
the collection, compilation and dissemination of statistics and related information, with particular regard to-

i. the avoidance of duplication in the collection by departments of government of information for statistical purposes;

ii. the attainment of compatibility between, and the integration of, statistics compiled by departments of government; and

iii. the maximum possible utilisation, for statistical purposes, of information and means of collection of information, available to departments of government;

c. to formulate, and ensure compliance with, standards for the carrying out by departments of government of operations for statistical purposes;

d. to provide advice and assistance to departments of government in relation to statistics; and generally to promote and develop integrated social and economic statistics for Tonga.

Brief history and other relevant background information
Brief history and other relevant background information
The Statistics Department is a Department of the Government of Tonga, was officially established in 1975. It operates under the authority of the Statistics Act Cap.53 of the Laws of Tonga. The purpose for its establishment is to be the leader and central authority for the government in providing official statistics necessary for social and economic development planning and management of the Kingdom of Tonga.

Legal basis
Legal basis
The Statistics Department operates under the authority of the Statistics Act Cap.53 of the Laws of Tonga.

The Statistics Act covers definitions, the statistics department purpose, powers and duties of the Minister, the responsibilities of the Government Statistician, temporary employees, civil servants, contracted services and research, oath of office, attestation, rules and instructions, estimates, acquiring statistical data, income tax returns, imports and exports entry forms, joint collection of statistics, what exchange may include, access to records, evidence of appointment, presumption, prohibition against divulging of information, exception to prohibition, idem, privileged of information, taxation, application of section, failure to fulfill or false declaration, failure to provide information, refusal to grant access to records, limitation and repeal of Census Act.

Other producers of official statistics
Other producers of official statistics
The Ministry of Health do keep statistical databases and/or build such databases for the delivery of health services and for policy purposes.

Statistical advisory bodies
Statistical advisory bodies
The Statistics Advisory Council includes the government, statutory boards, non-government organisations and schools.

Data collection
Most recent population census
30 Nov.-4 Dec. 2006
Access to administrative data
Administrative data have been observed as providing adequate bases for statistical purposes and are inexpensive, regularly available and meet the needs of some statistical areas in place.
Data confidentiality
The Statistics Act authorises the Government Statistician and any person authorised by the Government Statistician or contracted to perform special services for the Government Statistician will perform such services provided they will take oath or affirmation. The Oath of office affirms that employees of the Statistics Department will not without due authority disclose or make known any matter or thing that comes to their knowledge by reason of their employment. All information collected under the statistics Act will be kept strictly confidential and only accessed by authorised personnel.

Data dissemination
Release calendar (existence, when and how published)
Main publications
The Tonga Department of Statistics produces a wide range of publications. Many can be downlaoded in pdf format from the website. Hard copies can be obtained directly from the Department.

Economic Statistics Series

Consumer Price Index (CPI)

International Merchandise Trade

Balance Of Payments

Gross Domestic Product (GDP)

Social Statistics Series

Other Statistics

Manufacturing Output, Employment and Wages/Salaries

Agriculture Census

Household Income & Expenditure Survey

Tonga National Population Census 1996
Tonga National Population Census 2006

Labour Force Surveys
Languages of main publications
How are data disseminated (Paper, CD Rom, Website, online databases, databanks)?
Paper, electronic, download from website.
Availability of microdata for research purposes
The researcher should get the approval of the Cabinet to have access.

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