14 May 2019

Dear users of information resources of the State Committee of the Republic of Uzbekistan on statistics!

In connection with the article by the expert of the Center for Economic Development Assistance Yuri Naumov on the site www.spot.uz under the title “What is wrong with the GDP indicator of Uzbekistan in the State Statistics Committee reports?”, We want to clarify the questions that have arisen about the macroeconomic indicators of the Republic of Uzbekistan.

In this article, in particular, we are talking about the discrepancy in GDP data for 2017 in the press releases of the State Statistics Committee, published at different times. This happened for the following objective reasons.

As a result of the adoption of the state’s policy of open policy, including national statistics, and a series of presidential decrees concerning the accuracy and openness of statistical information, the State Committee of the Republic of Uzbekistan on statistics takes measures to improve the statistical methodology, ensure the completeness of reporting data, which appear to allow give an objective assessment of the level of GDP and its constituent industries.

To this end, the State Committee of the Republic of Uzbekistan on statistics regularly attracts experts from international organizations on national accounts statistics, such as the IMF and ADB, with whose participation it is gradually being implemented and, in the future, the statistical approaches will be revised to reflect international practice. In addition, recommendations and technical assistance from international organizations such as the World Bank, UNECE, UNFPA, UNICEF, etc. are widely used in the process of improving the statistical methodology.

The difference in GDP for 2017 is the result of recalculation of sectoral statistics. Thus, according to a preliminary estimate of the State Committee of the Republic of Uzbekistan on statistics, published in January 2018, Uzbekistan’s GDP was 249.1 trillion soums. later, in May 2018, the State Committee of the Republic of Uzbekistan on statistics preliminarily specified the volume of GDP to 254.0 trillion soums and posted these data on its official website, as well as on the National Summary Data Page of Uzbekistan as part of an enhanced General Data Dissemination System (e-GDDS) of IMF.

In January 2019, the State Committee of the Republic of Uzbekistan on statistics carried out a large-scale revision of GDP for 2017 (302.5 trillion soums), which mainly affected the agricultural sector. This is due to the fact that when calculating the volume of agricultural output over the course of a number of years, prices for agricultural products were used significantly lower than the market ones.

In order to solve this problem, the average annual prices for agricultural products were revised and aligned with market prices for all types of products, while the volumes in physical terms remained unchanged. For example, in 2017, if, prior to revision, the average annual price for 1 kg of grain was taken to be 648 soums, then after revision it was 1686 soums; vegetables before the revision - 895 soums, after the revision - 2547 soums; bahchi before the revision - 865 soum, after the revision - 1128 soum; beef meat in live weight before the revision - 5986 soums, after the revision - 17470 soums; milk before the revision - 577 soums, after revision - 1678 soums, etc.

After revising the average annual prices for agricultural products, the gross value added of this industry increased from 43.1 trillion soums to 91.0 trillion soums and, accordingly, GDP changed from 254.0 trillion soums to 302.5 trillion soums (+47 , 9 trillion soums due to agriculture, +0.6 trillion soums at the expense of its other industries). At the same time, as a result of this review, the GDP growth rate for 2017 decreased from 5.2% to 4.5%. Also, the share of agriculture in the sectoral structure of GDP increased from 19.7% to 34.0%, while the share of industry decreased from 27.2% to 22.2%, the share of construction - from 6.9% to 5.7 %, and the share of the service sector from 46.2% to 38.1%.

Concerning to the difference in net taxes on products, it is necessary to clarify that these changes are primarily related to the alignment and consistency of data between the system of national accounts and government finance statistics.

As is customary in world practice, in order to ensure comparability over time, GDP was recalculated for 2014–2016, and this data is posted on official website of the State Committee of the Republic of Uzbekistan on statistics for information users with the necessary notes (https://stat.uz/ru/ofitsialnaya- statistika / natsianalnye-scheta / statisticheskie-tablitsy). In the future, it is planned to continue the retrospective GDP calculations till July 2019, starting from 2010, and publish them on the website.

Attention should be paid to fact that such recalculations of statistical indicators for long periods are carried out infrequently and are associated with a significant revision of methodological approaches. As in world practice, State Committee of the Republic of Uzbekistan on statistics generates statistical information based on the principle of cyclical revision: first, preliminary assessments are made and, further, calculations are refined based on a broader information base.

We also ask you to pay attention to the note “In this section, statistical indicators are preliminary” in the section “Quarterly reports” and other footnotes to avoid misinterpretation of preliminary information. In the future, the State Committee of the Republic of Uzbekistan on statistics will consider issues of technical improvement of the official site to facilitate communication with users of information.

As for the GDP deflator index (at the end of 2018 - 128.1%), it should be noted that this indicator differs in its content from the consumer price index (CPI). Thus, the CPI describes the change in the prices of goods and services included only in the consumer basket, and the GDP deflator takes into account all goods and services produced by the economy, including investment goods, exported goods and services, as well as non-market services included in GDP. Also, when calculating the CPI, imported consumer goods are also taken into account, and when determining the GDP deflator, only goods produced by residents of the national economy are taken into account.

We will be grateful for any comments and suggestions about our publications. In the future, the State Committee of the Republic of Uzbekistan on statistics will continue to provide detailed coverage of the changes in the statistical data and the methodology of their calculations, as well as the reasons for such changes. We believe that close communication with the public will serve to a more correct interpretation and transparency of statistical data.

 

 

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