Country experience: Austria[1]   

6.23.        In Austria, Oesterreichische Nationalbank (OeNB) is responsible for compiling and disseminating information on trade in services between residents and non-residents. Since 2006, trade in services statistics have been compiled by taking samples from enterprises, institutional investors and banks (households are not included), instead of using the ITRS system as previously. To keep the costs of data collection low and make utmost use of existing data, OeNB  works in close cooperation with Statistics Austria, with OeNB concentrating on financial corporations and Statistics Austria focusing on the real economic sector.

6.24.        On behalf of OeNB, Statistics Austria compiles quarterly data on service exports and imports from non-financial corporations. The survey covers information on individual partner countries and all business activities according to EBOPS 2010, except for travel, which is measured separately. The survey is supplemented with information on cross-border government services, obtained from public institutions,  and on international aid services, such as education and health services, obtained from 120 non-profit organizations.

6.25.        The survey collects data from a stratified sample within the scope of the structural business survey, drawn from the total population of enterprises engaged in trade in services. To identify that population, Statistics Austria conducts a survey on services exports and imports in the enterprise sector every five years, and complements that information with prior settlement data (for unit-non-response) and estimates of values below survey thresholds. Since OeNB decided that the regular survey should cover at least 90 per cent of service exports and imports in every two-digit division of the Nomenclature générale des activités économiques dans les Communautés européennes (NACE), approximately 4,800 non-financial enterprises were selected (reflecting an initial reporting threshold of €200,000 for both annual services exports and imports). From 2013, the reporting threshold was raised to €500,000 after administrative data sources became available within the European Union through the VAT Information Exchange System.

6.26.        OeNB conducts the financial sector surveys. The report on service exports and imports by Austrian banks, as well as imports by insurance companies, mirrors the enterprise report run by Statistics Austria and covers all EBOPS 2010 items. In addition, OeNB makes use of administrative data from the Financial Market Authority (FMA) on insurance service exports, in particular. Quarterly data on premiums and claims from insurance service exports are reported to OeNB, whereas yearly data include financial claims and liabilities from insurance transactions and insurance technical reserves. FMA also gathers mirror data from other European Union countries on insurance service imports in Austria. Those data become available only with some delay, but they are especially important for the calculation of life insurance imports.


Back to C.1. Generic trade in services surveys


[1] Extended country examples are available from