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A.  Summary of good practices

2.2.            It is good practice for national laws and regulations to be established to define the rights and responsibilities of all agencies involved in the collection, exchange, processing, compilation and dissemination of  the following: data on services transactions between residents and non-residents; FATS; and additional monetary and non-monetary indicators for analysing the international supply of services. Such laws and regulations would ensure that  those agencies are  in a better position to establish the necessary institutional arrangements detailing their involvement in the statistical process. More specifically, such laws and regulations should give the compiler a clear mandate to collect the necessary data from relevant sources and to compile and disseminate those statistics in the formats deemed appropriate by the responsible agency. The present Guide encourages compilers to actively participate, whenever appropriate, in the preparation of the necessary modifications to national legislation or relevant administrative regulations. Moreover, it is good practice for international recommendations for trade in services statistics to be properly reflected in national laws or regulations.

2.3.           It is further advised that additional legal acts establish more specific provisions for data content, namely, the specific circumstances under which data must be reported to other national agencies  as well as the frequency of dissemination. The legal basis for surveys related to resident/non-resident trade in services statistics and FATS should also be well-established, and should be cited on the survey forms themselves. In the case of outward FATS, where the relevant company is located abroad, the legal acts should provide a mandate for statistical compilers to require information from domestic companies on their foreign affiliates. The statistical compilers should also be well aware of the contents of the legal provisions underpinning the international bank transaction reporting system (ITRS) implemented in the country and make full use of them. It is further advised that the national statistical act establish a reminder and penalty system, including the possibility of imposing fines on data reporters, in cases of non-compliance in reporting required information.

2.4.            Finally, it is of extraordinary importance that the legal framework include provisions guaranteeing the protection of individual data, restricting the use of such data to official statistical purposes only and preventing identifiable enterprise-specific information from being disclosed in the disseminated statistics.


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