Front Matter

Front Matter Page

© 2005 International Monetary Fund

December 2005

IMF Country Report No. 05/429

Oman: Report on the Observance of Standards and Codes—Data Module, Response by the Authorities, and Detailed Assessments Using the Data Quality Assessment Framework

This Report on the Observance of Standards and Codes on Data Module for Oman was prepared by a staff team of the International Monetary Fund as background documentation for the periodic consultation with the member country. It is based on the information available at the time it was completed on December 1, 2005. The views expressed in this document are those of the staff team and do not necessarily reflect the views of the government of Oman or the Executive Board of the IMF.

The Response by the Authorities on this report and the Detailed Assessments Using the Data Quality Assessment Framework (DQAF) are also included.

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Front Matter Page

INTERNATIONAL MONETARY FUND

OMAN

Report on the Observance of Standards and Codes (ROSC)—Data Module

Prepared by the Statistics Department

Approved by William E. Alexander and Mohsin S. Khan

December 1, 2005

The Report on the Observance of Standards and Codes (ROSC) data module provides an assessment of Oman’s macroeconomic statistics against the recommendations of the General Data Dissemination System (GDDS) complemented by an assessment of data quality based on the IMF’s Data Quality Assessment Framework (DQAF July 2003). The DQAF lays out internationally accepted practices in statistics, ranging from good governance in data producing agencies to practices specific to datasets.

The datasets covered in this report are national accounts, consumer price index, government finance, monetary, and balance of payments statistics. The agencies that compile the datasets assessed in this report are the Ministry of National Economy, the Ministry of Finance, and the Central Bank of Oman.

The datasets to which this report pertains can be accessed in print and on the Internet:

This report is based on information provided prior to and during a staff mission from February 8–23, 2004 and publicly available information. The mission team was headed by Mr. Eduardo Valdivia-Velarde, and included Mr. Thomas Alexander, Ms. Colleen Cardillo, Mr. Subramanian Sriram (all STA), Mr. David Hughes and Mrs. Sagé de Clerck (experts), and Ms. Christian Dimaandal (STA-Administrative Assistant).

Contents

  • Acronyms

  • Executive Summary

  • I. Introduction

  • II. Data Dissemination Practices and the General Data Dissemination System

    • Data dimension: coverage, periodicity, and timeliness

    • Quality dimension

    • Integrity dimension

    • Access dimension

    • Plans for improvement

  • III. Summary Assessment of Data Quality

    • Prerequisites of quality

    • Assurances of integrity

    • Methodological soundness

    • Accuracy and reliability

    • Serviceability

    • Accessibility

  • IV. Staff’s Recommendations

    • Cross-cutting Recommendations

    • National Accounts

    • Consumer Price Index

    • Government Finance Statistics

    • Monetary Statistics

    • Balance of Payments

  • Text Tables

  • 1. Overview of Current Practices Regarding Coverage, Periodicity, and Timeliness of Data Compared to the General Data Dissemination System

  • 2. Data Quality Assessment Framework (July 2003): Summary Presentation of Results

Acronyms

1993 SNA

System of National Accounts 1993

BPM5

Balance of Payments Manual, fifth edition

CBO

Central Bank of Oman

COICOP

Classification of Individual Consumption by Purpose

CPI

Consumer Price Index

DGES

Directorate General of Economic Statistics

DQAF

Data Quality Assessment Framework

DSBB

Dissemination Standards Bulletin Board

GDDS

General Data Dissemination System

GDP

Gross Domestic Product

GFS

Government Finance Statistics

GFSM 1986

A Manual on Government Finance Statistics, 1986

GFSM 2001

Government Finance Statistics Manual 2001

HIES

Household Income and Expenditure Survey

IIP

International Investment Position

IMF

International Monetary Fund

ITRS

International Transactions Reporting System

MFSM

Monetary and Financial Statistics Manual

MOF

Ministry of Finance

MONE

Ministry of National Economy

NAB

National Accounts Bulletin

Reserve Template

International Reserves and Foreign Currency Liquidity: Guidelines for a Data Template

ROSC

Report on the Observance of Standards and Codes

STA

Statistics Department, IMF

Executive Summary

This Report on the Observance of Standards and Codes (ROSC) data module provides a review of Oman’s data dissemination practices against the IMF’s General Data Dissemination System (GDDS), complemented by the in-depth assessment of the quality of the national accounts, consumer price index, government finance, monetary, and balance of payments statistics. The agencies that compile the statistics assessed in this report are the Ministry of National Economy (MONE), the Ministry of Finance (MOF), and the Central Bank of Oman (CBO). A mission from the Statistics Department carried out the assessment during a visit to Muscat, Oman, during February 8–23, 2004.

Omani authorities have strongly committed to adhering to internationally accepted standards and good practices in statistics. The authorities have taken several important measures in recent years, such as (1) implementing the latest international statistical standards (national accounts, prices, and balance of payments) and/or moving in that direction (government finance and monetary statistics), (2) participating in the GDDS and regularly updating the GDDS metadata, (3) creating a strong legal framework and institutional environment for compiling statistics, and (4) identifying plans for improvement and working toward their implementation.

Omani macroeconomic statistics are broadly adequate to conduct effective surveillance. Nevertheless, the mission identified shortcomings in some statistical practices that may detract from the accurate and timely analysis of economic and financial policies. The mission made recommendations to further enhance Oman’s adherence to international statistical standards. Some of these recommendations could be addressed with the current resources. However, more substantive improvements in the quality of statistics would require a commitment for additional resources. The mission reached the following main conclusions:

  • GDDS: Oman adheres to the recommendations for coverage, periodicity, and timeliness of most GDDS data categories. However, full adherence to the GDDS recommendations will also require (1) compiling production indices and data on unemployment, (2) improving data coverage on employment and wages/earnings of the private sector, (3) disseminating central government debt, as well as public and publicly guaranteed external debt/debt service schedule, (4) improving periodicity of the consumer price index (CPI), and (5) improving the timeliness of balance of payments core indicators—although comprehensive balance of payments data meet the timeliness recommended in the GDDS. Oman also disseminates some of the GDDS encouraged data indicators.

  • Prerequisites of quality: Several laws such as the Banking Law, the Financial Law, and the Statistical Law provide a good overall legal and institutional environment for the statistical activity in Oman. The legal framework and institutional arrangements are broadly adequate for the collection and dissemination of statistics by the agencies in their areas of responsibilities. The laws establish mandatory response, procedures for protecting confidentiality, and penalties for nonresponse/misreporting and for breach of confidentiality. Effective data sharing arrangements are in place. Consultations with users, in particular, from the nongovernmental sector, should be undertaken more regularly for all datasets.

  • Assurances of integrity: In general, agencies demonstrate professionalism, pursue transparency in their statistical policies and practices, and provide ethical guidelines to their staff. The public trusts that macroeconomic statistics produced in Oman are objective. Selection of data sources and methods is governed solely by statistical considerations. Government statistics only cover budgetary accounts. The extent of the government’s internal access to statistics prior to their release for certain datasets is not disseminated.

  • Methodological soundness: The methodologies for macroeconomic statistics broadly follow internationally accepted guidelines. Government accounts should exclude the gross transactions of market producers but include the net results of their operations. Improvements are also needed in the coverage of national accounts and balance of payments statistics. Some classification issues for GFS, monetary, and balance of payments statistics need to be addressed.

  • Accuracy and reliability: In general, source data are comprehensive, timely, and adequately detailed to compile statistics. Nonetheless, data sources for balance of payments statistics need to be expanded. Statistical techniques are broadly consistent with international standards, but some statistical techniques for national accounts, CPI, and balance of payments statistics should be improved. Revision studies to inform statistical processes are not prepared regularly.

  • Serviceability: The disseminated data appear to broadly meet users’ needs, as indicated by the results of a recent user survey.1 There is room for improving the consistency between monetary statistics and GFS. In general, the periodicity and timeliness of Omani statistics are satisfactory although the timeliness of central government debt should be improved.

  • Accessibility: Opportunities exist for expanding the accessibility of macroeconomic data and metadata for most datasets. In particular, statistics should be made available to all users simultaneously, and advance release calendars with precise dates for release are needed. Assistance to users needs to be improved in all statistical agencies, in particular by providing sector-specific contact information.

Front Matter Page

INTERNATIONAL MONETARY FUND

OMAN

Report on the Observance of Standards and Codes (ROSC)—Data Module

Response by the Authorities

December 1, 2005

Contents

  • I. Introduction

  • II. General Response

  • III. Specific Comments

    • A. National Accounts

    • B. Consumer Price Index

    • C. Monetary Statistics

    • D. Balance of Payments Statistics

Front Matter Page

INTERNATIONAL MONETARY FUND

OMAN

Detailed Assessments Using the Data Quality Assessment Framework (DQAF July 2003)

Prepared by the Statistics Department

Approved by William E. Alexander and Mohsin S. Khan

December 1, 2005

This document contains a detailed assessment by dataset of the elements and indicators that underlie the data quality dimensions discussed in Oman’s Report on the Observance of Standards and Codes (ROSC—Data Module. It also includes as appendices (i) a summary of the main features of the General Data Dissemination System, (ii) a generic Data Quality Assessment Framework, and (iii) the results of the users’ survey.

Contents

  • Acronyms

  • I. National Accounts

  • II. Price Statistics (Consumer Price Statistics)

  • III. Government Finance Statistics

  • IV. Monetary Statistics

  • V. Balance of Payments Statistics

  • Text Tables

  • 1. Data Quality Assessment Framework (July 2003): Summary of Results for National Accounts

  • 2. Data Quality Assessment Framework (July 2003): Summary of Results for Price Statistics (Consumer Price Statistics)

  • 3. Data Quality Assessment Framework (July 2003): Summary of Results for Government Finance Statistics

  • 4. Data Quality Assessment Framework (July 2003): Summary of Results for Monetary Statistics

  • 5. Data Quality Assessment Framework (July 2003): Summary of Results for Balance of Payments Statistics

  • Appendices

  • I. Summary of the General Data Dissemination System (GDDS)

  • II. Data Quality Assessment Framework—Generic Framework

  • III. Users’ Survey

  • Appendix Tables

  • 1. Comments by Users of Macroeconomic Statistics

  • 2. Questionnaire Results Analyzed by Type of User

  • 3. Results of Oman’s User Survey