The IMF’s African Regional Technical Assistance Center South Strengthens Regional Statisticians’ Capacity

By International Monetary Fund (IMF)
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On March 21—25, 2016, AFRITAC South held a workshop at the Africa Training Institute in Mauritius on export and import price indices. The workshop brought together 27 economic statisticians from 12 AFRITAC South countries, including national accounts compilers from statistical offices and data users from policy-making government institutions and agencies.

Mr. Bahadoor, Acting Director of Statistics Mauritius, noted in his opening remarks the importance of measuring price changes as opposed to volume changes to understand international trade statistics.

The objective of the workshop was to broaden participants' understanding of the theory and practice of compiling export and import price indices. It covered index number theory and its practical implications relating to the choice of index number formula at lower and higher levels of aggregation. The workshop also covered methods for sampling and collecting data from enterprises/establishments. There were sessions on methods for handling temporarily and permanently unavailable items; undertaking adjustments to prices for quality changes; including new products, and enterprises/establishments; and chaining and linking indices with updated weighting structures.

The workshop focused on data issues and compilation methodologies covering methodological and practical issues relevant to both compilers and users of data. Participants shared their knowledge and experience of implementing internationally agreed statistical standards in AFRITAC South countries in the context of limited resources and scarce data sources.

AFRITAC South will continue to provide technical assistance and hands-on training for the adoption of internationally recognized statistical standards.