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Compilation and Dissemination of Distributive Trade Statistics by KONDWANI CHILOPA NSO MALAWI
Outline • Sources of data • Coverage • Classification • Data collection • Processing of data • Quality control • Main outputs • Data users • Dissemination strategy
Sources data NSO Malawi compiles its Distributive Trade Statistics based on data collected from enterprises through an Annual Economic sample survey (AES). The names of the enterprises that are selected for the survey are obtained from the Business Information Register (BIR). The BIR is a dynamic database containing information on all registered and unregistered enterprises know by the NSO to operate in Malawi. The BIR contains names, addresses, physical location, type of activity, number of employees, turnover, value added and ISIC group of every business and it is updated on regular basis.
Coverage • The survey covers all sectors of the Malawi economy by type of activity. • The survey covers private, statutory bodies and public (government) enterprises engaged in production and sale of goods and services. • The survey selects large scale profit making enterprises while medium and small scale enterprises are selected on basis of critical employment size or annual turnover.
Classification • The United Nations International Standard Industrial Classification (ISIC, Rev 3) is used to classify economic activities. • The activities are classified at 2-digit, 3-digit and 4-digit levels. • However, some activities are combined to ensure confidentiality inline with the Statistics Act 1967.
Data collection Personal delivery of questionnaires to respective respondents in the selected enterprises is used as a method of collecting information. For enterprises that fail to respond but have the current annual company accounts available, their questionnaires are completed at our office using these accounts as a basis for estimates. The reference period is 12 months and this is normally the enterprises financial year. A financial year is determined on the basis of bias of the months within the year. For example, any enterprise with its financial year ending 31th March will be considered to have operated in the previous year because the current year has only 3 months as compared to 9 months in the previous year.
Data processing • Data is processed using Microsoft Excel • Mainly graphs and tables are computed
Quality control • On receipt of questionnaires, the following steps are undertaken • Sorting • Manual checks • Verification of responses where company accounts statements are available • Any problems found are corrected after consultation with the respondent.
Main Outputs • The major indicators compiled from this survey are the following; • Employment • Total income • Remuneration • Annual Capital Investments (Fixed assets) • Disposal of fixed assets • Turnover • Value added • Gross profit by sector • Stocks
Data users • Government institutions • National Accounts • Private researchers • Academia • Business community • NGO’s • Media • Investors
Dissemination methods The AES indicators are released in the official NSO publication as follows; A) Annual Economic Survey report B) In addition data users make specific data requests that are provided either by email, fax or post. C) Users can also access the reports which are posted on the NSO official website: www.nso.malawi.net
Challenges faced • Late completion of questionnaires by respondents this in turn delays data entry and processing • No any distributive trade indices are produced