26.32. Need for appropriate metadata and guidance for interpreting combined trade data. Users expect that trade statistics will cover trade in both goods and services and be presented to them as a coherent data set. To meet this user expectation, it is good practice for IMTS compilers, in addition to making the IMTS data available in their own right, to closely cooperate with compilers of international trade in services in order to develop a policy of presenting (some) data on merchandise trade and trade in services alongside each other. This combined presentation should be accompanied with appropriate explanations regarding the scope and conceptual overlaps of the data and include a numerical assessments of such overlaps. It is good practice to provide guidance, including examples, on how data can (and cannot) be used.
26.33. Trade data and BOP data. Trade data on a BOP basis is important for the presentation of an overall picture of trade flows, as it shows data on the trade in goods and data on the trade in services on the same conceptual basis. However, such data do not provide the level of detail needed for an in-depth analysis of international trade, as it is lacking, for example, partner and product breakdown.