In regards with the increasing number of questions on compilation and publication of official statistical data on annual and quarterly Gross Domestic Product (GDP), Statistical Office of Montenegro – MONSTAT published an integrated release as an answer to the questions of journalists and to inform the public.

The processing of GDP is not late. In accordance with our Annual Plan of Surveys which is published in the Official Gazette of Montenegro 53/11, on page 53 it is said that MONSTAT will conduct a pilot survey in 2011 – the compilation of quarterly GDP, practically meaning that MONSTAT must conduct the survey with the aim to test methodology, program of processing, etc., and to publish the results only if it is discovered that all necessary methodological conditions are created. Since all methodological conditions are not created (new statistical classification and new registration of enterprises according to the new law), the results are not published. But the pilot survey is on-going. Together with the quarterly GDP compilation, MONSTAT does the annual GDP compilation for 2011. MONSTAT is hoping that this will verify the quality of our pilot survey for the needs of quarterly compilation, and to enable that GDP data for the first and the second quarter of 2012 are to be published together with the annual GDP data for 2011, up to the end of current month.
Thus, the quarterly survey will receive the status of regular survey within the Annual Plan for 2013.

Additionally, MONSTAT would like to use this opportunity and to inform the public that the development level of MONSTAT cannot be compared with any NSI from the neighbouring countries. The first reason is that MONSTAT was not an independent statistical body until the country independence in 2006, but MONSTAT functioned under the methodological supervision of Federal Statistical Office of state union (of Yugoslavia, later Serbia and Montenegro), implying that the function of MONSTAT was only the data collection, while data processing, methodology development and all other complex jobs were done in Serbia. This resulted in the situation that NA, i.e. GDP and staff needed for the compilation activity started with the development for the first time at the beginning of 2003. Having in mind this position, and when we compare the tradition of Montenegro in the GDP compilation of only ten years, and the tradition of neighbouring countries, e.g. Serbia of approximately 50 years (where the quarterly GDP started 9 years ago), you will agree that MONSTAT made a significant progress considering just the fact that MONSTAT develops quarterly accounts. Also, there should be considered the fact that only 7 staff members work in the NA department of MONSTAT compared with the NSIs of neighbouring countries where the NA departments have in average 20 staff members. Regardless of the country size, the scope of work is the same, the obligation toward EU is the same, same international methodologies are used, and what is the most important is - our job is internationally comparable and can be assessed.

The results of annual GDP compilation for 2011 will be published up to 30 September according to the Annual Plan of Surveys (Official Gazette of Montenegro 53/11). Pursuant to the Law on Official Statistics and Official Statistical System of Montenegro (Official Gazette of Montenegro 18/12), all users have the same access to the data, thus MONSTAT cannot provide any estimates before the officially published data.

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