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Country Profile of Greece

Main statistical agency
Main statistical agency name
National Statistical Service of Greece (NSSG)
Web address
Position in the government
The National Statistical Service of Greece is a General Secretariat of the Ministry of Economy and Finance.
Organizational structure and finance
The NSSG has the following structure: a Central Service with two (2) General Directorates and fourteen (14) Divisions. The total number of employees amounts to 1,118, of which 800 belong to the Central Service and 318 to the Decentralised Services (Statistical Services of Prefectures). The system of official statistics is financed from the state budget and grants.
Multi-annual or annual work program
There is an annual work programme, and a multi-annual one is foreseen.
Main duties
The statistics compiled by the NSSG - monthly, quarterly, annual, quinquennial and decennial - cover almost all the activity sectors. Population data (population by different categories, vital statistics - marriages - births - deaths), employment and unemployment data, data concerning health and social insurance, education, justice, the production process, finance, prices, the national income and, finally, the cultural activities consist the main input for the derivation of statistical tables and indices compiled by the NSSG on a short-term and long-term basis.

Brief history and other relevant background information
Brief history and other relevant background information
The first statistical work carried out -just a year after Greece was declared as an independent state- was the population census carried out in 1828. The evolution of statistics goes hand in hand with the evolution of public administration. In 1860 the Bureau of Public Finances was divided into 4 Departments, one of which was entitled the Department of Statistics. In 1910 a Department of Statistics was set up in the Ministry of National Economy responsible for collecting, processing and publishing all the National Statistics. At the same time a Council of Statistics was set up composed of University professors and representatives of the Chambers of commerce and industry. In 1925 the reorganisation of the Department of Statistics led to the creation of the General Statistical Service of Greece within the Ministry of National Economy. In 1929-1930 the Monthly Bulletin and the Statistical Yearbook were published for the first time. During the 1953-1956 the basis for the creation of a modernised Statistical Service was laid down. Instrumental to these efforts was the contribution made by experts from the UN organisation. In 1956 the National Statistical Service of Greece (NSSG) was established by the legislative decree no 3627. The NSSG is a public agency supervised by the Ministry of Economy and Finance, responsible for the conduct and dissemination of official statistics. Provision has been made in specific articles of the foundation law 3627/56 and the law 2392/96 so as to ensure confidentiality of individual data. These laws govern all individual statistics produced by the NSSG.

Legal basis
Legal basis
The legal and institutional environment for collecting, processing and disseminating statistics is provided by two laws adopted in 1956 (Decree No. 3627) and 1996 (Decree No. 2392), and by the Presidential Decrees of 1986 (No. 224) and 2000 (No. 226), which clearly describe the role and responsibilities of the National Statistical Service of Greece (NSSG), including the compilation and dissemination of national accounts statistics.

Other producers of official statistics
Other producers of official statistics
NSSG is the main provider of statistical information. For a certain number of statistical areas the responsibility of the production of statistics falls also in other official bodies. In the field of education, statistics are produced by the NSSG and the Ministry of Education and in the field of R&D and innovation statistics the General Secretariat of R&D performs surveys in this field.

Statistical advisory bodies
Statistical advisory bodies
A 'National Statistical Council' is provided for the National Law No 2392/1996, art. 11. However, art. 11 has not yet been implemented and is currently under revision.

Data collection
Most recent population census
18 March 2001
Access to administrative data
The access to administrative data is guaranteed by law (2392/96). The state registers and archives of the public services and the legal entities of the wider public sector are accessible by the NSSG in order to promote the use of administrative archives and to reduce the burden of respondents. In particular, with respect to the use of fiscal data of enterprises derived from the VAT archives, a joint Ministerial Decision has been signed in which, among other things, the anonimity and the fiscal secrecy for the enterprises is fully respected.
Data confidentiality
It is ruled by the following:

o Legal framework (including the NSSG's Confidentiality Committee)

o Publication and dissemination of aggregated data only

o Disseminating data after deletion of confidential variables

o Disseminating data without any identifiers

o Respecting Eurostat's recommendations and following, to a certain degree, common practices with the other Member States of the EU.

The Article 8 of the 1996 law does not allow the dissemination of individual data without the prior permission of the respondent. Articles 6 and 7 require that report forms that are used to collect data from respondents must also state whether the information supplied may be used for fiscal purposes or in connection with military conscription. If not, the contents are considered confidential and may not be used by the Government to check income tax returns or in connection with legal disputes.

These terms on confidentiality are consolidated by the Law 2392/96 and the following Regulations of the European Union:

Council Regulation (EC) No 1588/90; regarding the confidentiality of data provided to the EU ( EUROSTAT).

New Council Regulation (EC) No 223/2009; regarding the EU statistics.

Data dissemination
Release calendar (existence, when and how published)
There exists an annual calendar of all Press Releases and updates published also to the website. Data is becoming available to all users by Press Releases disseminated to the Press and to subscribers by e-mail. At the same time Press Releases and main data are posted to the website.
Main publications
1) Statistical Yearbook of Greece,
2) Concise Statistical Yearbook of Greece
3) Monthly Statistical Bulletin
Languages of main publications
Greek, English
How are data disseminated (Paper, CD Rom, Website, online databases, databanks)?
Users can find the most recent statistical data in a variety of formats (paper, cd-rom etc) with only a minimum cost. Free of charge are the Press Releases, paper copies of published data and the access to the NSSG's website. The trend which is going to be followed is from paper format to Internet. Data upon request subject to a special process are charged according to the man/days required for the production of the relative tabulations. User assistance is provided at the NSSG's library as well as the relevant Divisions.
All Press Releases are immediately presented in the NSSG's website and the most of them in English.
Availability of microdata for research purposes
The NSSG follows the European practices and the European legal framework. Hence, lately following Commission Regulation (EC) 831/2002, article 7, for such access a bilateral agreement is signed where a six weeks notice is given to the NSO to decide about allowing or not access to micro data. Moreover, a register of users that have granted access to micro data has been initiated.

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