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Data vital for planning development in PNG

DATA and statistics play an important role in nation building but many do not appreciate or recognize this fact.

The National Statistical Office (NSO), a state agency mandated to collect data, compile, analyse and disseminate statistics for public consumption, highlighted the importance of data and statistics during a two-day stakeholders’ statistics workshop in Port Moresby this week.

The workshop brought together various stakeholders, key development partners and line agencies in a collaborative effort for all to appreciate the importance of data and statistics and also their roles in collecting and sharing data, producing and disseminating statistics needed or providing funding and technical support in the production of statistics to advance PNG’s development aspirations.

National Statistician, Roko Koloma, said many people criticize NSO as non-functional.

Therefore mindful of this criticism and from demands within and external for evidence based data collected and certified in accordance with globally accepted standards, in 2013, NSOs began a journey of transformation to restructure the organization to build up capacity to deliver relevant and timely statistics.

Within the theme, Appreciating DATA & Statistics in Development Planning, the NSO as producer of official statistics emphasized on the role of statistics in PNGs development. The various stakeholders also made presentations highlighting their use of data or statistics, what statistics they produce or what data is available from their administrative records and how users can access this information.

This was a follow-up workshop from last year where a media workshop was conducted to give insight into reform program NSO was undertaking to build up capacity and expose the importance of its role to the public.

NSO’s commitment to the government includes collaboration with key state agencies, development partners and other stakeholders to improve and enhance capacities to produce and deliver quality and relevant statistics or a regular and timely basis. Sunday Chronicle / ONE PNG

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