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        The Compiler's Guide is aligned with the international statistical standards in the field of economic statistics, in particular the System of National Accounts 2008 (2008 SNA), the BPM6, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) Benchmark Definition of Foreign Direct Investment, 4th edition, 2008 and the International Recommendations for Tourism Statistics, 2008

        The preparation of the Guide was organized by means of four virtual meetings and one face-to-face meeting. The members of the UN Expert Group, including all members of TFSITS, participated actively in these meetings. The group of about 70 experts from various national agencies of developed and developing countries exchanged hundreds of inputs in numerous iterations of successive drafts of the chapters. The Guide benefited from strong cooperation among international organizations, as well as from the advice of consultants, the invaluable input of a large number of member countries' experts and the many comments received during the successive worldwide consultations and online discussion forums, conducted under the auspices of the Task Force.

        The Guide will help to harmonize and improve the ways in which statisticians at the national level collect, compile and disseminate trade in services statistics. While international standards in economic statistics[3] are in the process of being implemented, the publication of the present Guide is timely, providing the statistical community with guidelines, best practices, case studies and practical advice on the compilation of trade in services statistics. Those statistics consist of transactions between residents and non-residents in services classified by the Extended Balance of Payments Services Classification (EBOPS) categories and by country of residence; they also include foreign affiliate trade statistics (FATS), as well as statistics on modes of supply. The overarching aim of the Guide is to increase the availability and quality of those statistics in order to fulfil the urgent need and demand for such data by policymakers, researchers, market analysts and the public in general.

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