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International Merchandise Trade Statistics (IMTS)
  Methodology IMTS
  UN Expert Group on IMTS
UN Comtrade
Analytical tables/ publications(IMTS)
International cooperation and workshops (IMTS)
Statistics of International Trade in Services (SITS)
  Methodology SITS
  Task Force on SITS
  UN ServiceTrade
  International cooperation and workshops (SITS)
Distributive Trade Statistics (DTS)
  Methodology DTS
  International cooperation and workshops (DTS)
  UN Expert Group on DTS
  Related Links
  Contact Information
Compilation of Basic Economic Statistics
  Economic Census
  International cooperation and workshops (BES)
Tourism Statistics
  UN Expert Group on Tourism Statistics (EGTS)
  International Recommendations for Tourism Statistics (unedited)

International Recommendations
for Distributive Trade Statistics 2008

(IRDTS 2008)

Purpose. IRDTS 2008 is designed to provide a comprehensive methodological framework for the collection, compilation and dissemination of distributive trade statistics as well as policy guidance on a number of practical issues. It deals with compilation of both structural and short-term statistics.

IRDTS 2008 is consistent with other fields of economic statistics such as industrial statistics, construction statistics and other related domains of structural and short-term statistics, index numbers compilations, performance indicators, and, last but not least, it is harmonized with the System of National Accounts 2008 (2008 SNA).

IRDTS 2008 will help ensure production of distributive trade statistics which are policy relevant, timely, reliable, internationally comparable, and meet the demands of the user community.

Organisation. IRDTS 2008 covers all aspects of distributive trade statistics and consists of the following nine chapters and three annexes:

  • Chapter I provides a description of the distributive trade activities in terms of International Standard Industrial Classification of All Economic Activities (ISIC) Rev.4 and other classifications, discusses boundary issues and defines the scope of distributive trade statistics;
  • Chapter II describes the statistical and reporting units that are useful for the collection of distributive trade statistics and economic analysis of the economy;
  • Chapter III explains the main characteristics of statistical units required for their unique identification and classification;
  • Chapter IV presents the definitions of data items for use in distributive trade statistics with reference to the data items to be collected and statistics to be published;
  • Chapter V describes a set of main indicators useful for evaluating the performance of the distributive trade sector;
  • Chapter VI discusses the main data sources and methods used for the compilation of distributive trade statistics;
  • Chapter VII provides recommendations on short-term distributive trade statistics including indices of distributive trade, seasonal adjustments and benchmarking;
  • Chapter VIII discusses data quality and metadata relating to distributive trade statistics;
  • Chapter IX provides guidance and recommendations on the dissemination of distributive trade statistics and presents selected data items identified for international reporting with annual and infra-annual periodicity.
  • Annex I presents the list of data items for use in distributive trade statistics;
  • Annex II provides the list of activities excluded from the scope of the relevant distributive trade divisions and classes; and
  • Annex III provides an example of identifying the principal activity of a reporting unit using the top-down method within wholesale and retail trade.

Full text -- IRDTS 2008