Support to Good Governance – official statistics

Project description

Title: Support to Good Governance – official statistics
Commissioned by: German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)
Country: Pakistan
Lead executing agency: Economic Affairs Division (EAD)
Overall term: 2014 to 2015

Team of the Statistics Bureau. © GIZ


The General Statistics Act (2011) sets out the general framework for a decentralised system of official statistics in Pakistan. At the federal level, the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS) is the apex body responsible for setting the standards and rules for statistics. It also coordinates the different producers of official data. At provincial level, the provincial bureaus of statistics are autonomous bodies, responsible for collecting evaluating and disseminating statistics according to needs, while adhering to the national standards.

The bureaus of statistics have only limited capacities for producing up-to-date, harmonised, well founded and internationally comparable statistics and indicators. Existing data is difficult to access and is rarely provided in accordance with the needs of the data users. A lack of consistency in the quality of data from different data producers often undermines the credibility of official data. This, in turn, hinders evidence-based policy-making.


The quality of data available from the federal and provincial bureaus of statistics is enhanced.


The programme provides technical advice and training for the collection, analysis and publishing of statistics at federal and provincial levels. Through process and organisational advice, it is enhancing the capacities of the bureaus to assess planned data collection procedures, including questionnaire and content design. It also provides policy and technical advice to assist PBS in setting national standards for official statistics. The programme supports PBS and the provincial bureaus in harmonising their data collection procedures. It also provides guidance to enhance the cooperation between the various partners, and to strengthen their public relations, while improving the dialogue with other data producers and with the users of data.

Activities at the federal level focus on the improvement of national account estimations and its supportive statistics. Regionally, the programme supports the provincial bureaus of statistics of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Punjab in establishing regional economic accounting. It also assists the provincial partners in the collection of gender-relevant data, and data about local public service delivery.


Drawing on the policy and process advice provided by the programme, in 2011 the government established a legal framework for a countrywide system of official statistics in Pakistan: the General Statistics Act.

The provision of technical advice, IT applications and training have underpinned the rebasing of price indices and the successful completion of production-based national accounts. The time gap in data analysis has been reduced and the quality of data improved. The evaluation of gross domestic product is now supplemented by quarterly calculations.

The country’s full expenditure on health care has been calculated, using international method adapted to the country’s particular situation.

Data collection and analysis at federal level now provides gender-disaggregated information.