Information about Asia and the Pacific Asia y el Pacífico
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Thailand

Author(s):
International Monetary Fund
Published Date:
April 2006
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Information about Asia and the Pacific Asia y el Pacífico
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I. Overall Assessment

1. Thailand subscribed to the Special Data Dissemination Standard (SDDS) on August 9, 1996, and started posting its metadata on the Dissemination Standards Bulletin Board (DSBB) on September 19, 1996. Thailand is in observance of the SDDS, meeting the specifications for coverage, periodicity, timeliness, and the dissemination of advance release calendars.1 Thailand does not use any of the flexibility options for timeliness and periodicity allowed by the SDDS. Appendix I provides an overview of Thailand’s dissemination practices compared to the SDDS.

2. The Report on the Observance of Standards and Codes (ROSC)—Data Module contains the following main observations. Thailand possesses a well-developed macroeconomic statistical system, with many strengths that span all of the datasets assessed in this report. The government clearly recognizes the importance of good statistics for effective decision-making in all sectors of the economy, and it is well accepted at all levels of the statistics-producing agencies that quality builds trust and, thus, is a cornerstone of statistical work. The professionalism of staff—and the pride they take in their work—are notable. The public has ready access to data and metadata, including through the Internet, and prompt and knowledgeable support service is available to users. The statistical agencies currently are at various stages of implementing international best practice methodologies; overall, the statistical system would benefit from an acceleration of this activity. In addition, it would be desirable to strengthen the source data on which the aggregate macroeconomic statistics are based, and to strengthen what, in some instances, risks becoming an outdated legal framework for the collection, compilation, and dissemination of macroeconomic statistics. There is some scope, too, to strengthen statistical revision policies and practices. Section II provides a summary assessment by agency and dataset based on a four-part scale. This is followed by staff’s recommendations in Section III. The authorities’ response to this report and a volume of detailed assessments are presented in separate documents.

3. In applying the IMF’s Data Quality Assessment Framework (DQAF), July 2003, the remainder of this section presents the mission’s main conclusions. The presentation is done at the level of the DQAF’s quality dimensions, by agency for the first two dimensions and across datasets for the remaining four.

4. With regard to prerequisites of quality, various laws and decrees authorize the Bank of Thailand (BOT), the National Economic and Social Development Board (NESDB), and the Fiscal Policy Office (FPO) in the Ministry of Finance (MOF) to collect, compile, and disseminate the relevant statistics. These laws do not necessarily give exclusive authority to the relevant agency to collect the particular statistics in which they specialize, but, as a matter of practice, cooperation among the agencies is effective and there has been little overlapping of responsibilities. In the case of balance of payments statistics, no explicit mandate is given to the BOT to compile these statistics, adversely affecting their comprehensiveness. The BOT relies to some degree on foreign exchange control legislation for the necessary powers to collect comprehensive balance of payments source data, which may become increasingly problematic over time if exchange controls are further liberalized. Resources are broadly commensurate with the present needs of the statistical system, although additional resources would permit best-practice methodologies to be implemented at a faster pace. The agencies devote considerable attention to monitoring the overall quality of the statistical program and ensure that statistics remain relevant to users’ needs through regular contacts with the users. As to assurances of integrity, a combination of legislation and tradition affords a high degree of independence to the agencies for their statistical work. They are free to choose methodologies and appropriate data sources. Staff are well trained, exhibiting a high degree of professionalism in their work. The terms and conditions under which statistics are compiled are readily available to the public. The government does not have access to statistics prior to their release to the public. Staff of the statistical agencies are held to a high ethical standard in the conduct of their work.

5. Concepts and definitions, in general, are methodologically sound, and broadly conform to internationally accepted standards. Monetary statistics follow the Monetary and Financial Statistics Manual (MFSM). Balance of payments statistics conform to the Balance of Payments Manual, fifth edition (BPM5). Data on quarterly and annual GDP generally conform to the System of National Accounts 1968 (1968 SNA), but conversion to the System of National Accounts 1993 (1993 SNA) has begun and some 1993 SNA changes have been introduced. Government finance statistics are in transition to the Government Finance Statistics Manual 2001 (GFSM 2001), with full implementation expected by 2009. In the cases of national accounts and government finance statistics, full implementation of the 1993 SNA and GFSM 2001 would bring the scope of the statistics fully into line with accepted international methodologies. In the case of balance of payments statistics, a need exists to expand the scope by developing data sources for unrecorded trade and by ensuring better coverage in the areas of services, income, and transfers. The classification of financial derivatives in the monetary statistics needs to conform with the MFSM. In general, the basis for recording stocks and flows would benefit from a full adoption of accrual methods and greater reliance on market prices.

6. The accuracy and reliability of macroeconomic statistics, while generally sound, are adversely affected in some instances by deficiencies in source data collection programs. For instance, data sourcing for balance of payments statistics could depend less on the International Transactions Reporting System (ITRS) with more recourse to alternative sources. More reliable source data for household expenditure would improve the national accounts, while government finance statistics would benefit from more timely actual data on local governments. Procedures for assessing source data are adequate, as are statistical techniques and procedures to assess and validate intermediate data and statistical outputs. However, the base year for constant price national accounts statistics is far too old, and should be updated. Studies and analyses of revisions are routinely carried out, although the results of revision studies could be used more effectively to improve preliminary balance of payments data.

7. As to serviceability, the periodicity and timeliness of the statistics meet or exceed SDDS standards. Datasets are internally consistent, and there is broad consistency across datasets. Because of the recent adoption of MFSM methodology for monetary statistics, the new series are available only from January 2005; however, the main aggregates are reconcilable between both the old and new series. Data revisions generally follow a regular and transparent schedule, preliminary and revised data are clearly identified, but studies and analyses of revisions normally are not published.

8. The statistical agencies provide users with a high level of accessibility to data and metadata, primarily through their websites and regular publications. Data are presented clearly and, for the most part, with appropriate detail. Statistical publications and websites identify suitable contact points for user assistance. Prompt and knowledgeable support services are available. With the exception of national accounts, suitably detailed metadata are readily available to users.

II. Assessment by Agency and Dataset

9. Assessment of the quality of four macroeconomic datasets—national accounts, government finance, monetary, and balance of payments—was conducted using the DQAF, July 2003. In this section, the results are presented at the level of the DQAF elements and using a four-point rating scale (Table 1). Assessments of the prerequisites of data quality and the assurances of integrity (Dimensions “0” and “1” of the DQAF) are presented in Tables 2ac. For each dataset, the assessment of methodological soundness, accuracy and reliability, serviceability, and accessibility (Dimensions “2” to “5” of the DQAF) are shown in Tables 3ad.

Table 1.Thailand: Data Quality Assessment Framework July 2003—Summary Results
Key to symbols: O = Practice Observed; LO = Practice Largely Observed; LNO =Practice Largely Not Observed; NO = Practice Not Observed; NA = Not Applicable
DatasetsNational AccountsGovernment Finance StatisticsMonetary StatisticsBalance of Payments Statistics
Dimensions/Elements
0. Prerequisites of quality
0.1 Legal and institutional environmentOOOLO
0.2 ResourcesLOLOOO
0.3 RelevanceOOOO
0.4 Other quality managementOOOO
1. Assurances of integrity
1.1 ProfessionalismOOOO
1.2 TransparencyOOOO
1.3 Ethical standardsOOOO
2. Methodological soundness
2.1 Concepts and definitionsLOOOO
2.2 ScopeLOLOOLO
2.3 Classification/sectorizationOOLOLO
2.4 Basis for recordingLOLOOLO
3. Accuracy and reliability
3.1 Source dataOLOOLO
3.2 Assessment of source dataOOOO
3.3 Statistical techniquesLOOOO
3.4 Assessment and validation of intermediate data and statistical outputsOOOO
3.5 Revision studiesOOOLO
4. Serviceability
4.1 Periodicity and timelinessOOOO
4.2 ConsistencyOOLOO
4.3 Revision policy and practiceLOLOOLO
5. Accessibility
5.1 Data accessibilityLOOOO
5.2 Metadata accessibilityLOOOO
5.3 Assistance to usersOOOO
Practice observed: current practices generally in observance meet or achieve the objectives of DQAF internationally accepted statistical practices without any significant deficiencies.Practice largely observed: some departures, but these are not seen as sufficient to raise doubts about the authorities’ ability to observe the DQAF practices. Practice largely not observed: significant departures and the authorities will need to take significant action to achieve observance. Practice not observed: most DQAF practices are not met. Not applicable: used only exceptionally when statistical practices do not apply to a country’s circumstances.
Practice observed: current practices generally in observance meet or achieve the objectives of DQAF internationally accepted statistical practices without any significant deficiencies.Practice largely observed: some departures, but these are not seen as sufficient to raise doubts about the authorities’ ability to observe the DQAF practices. Practice largely not observed: significant departures and the authorities will need to take significant action to achieve observance. Practice not observed: most DQAF practices are not met. Not applicable: used only exceptionally when statistical practices do not apply to a country’s circumstances.
Table 2a.Thailand: Assessment of Data Quality—Dimensions 0 and 1—National Economic and Social Development Board
0. Prerequisites of quality1. Assurances of integrity
Legal and institutional environment

The NESDB Act of 1978, together with a formal civil service agreement, gives the NESDB a strong legal basis for compiling and disseminating the national accounts statistics. The NESDB has good data sharing and coordination procedures with other government agencies. Confidentiality of respondents’ data is guaranteed under the Statistics Act, B.E. 2508 (1965), which governs the operations of the National Statistical Office (NSO), the NSO being the main supplier of data for the national accounts. The NESDB and NSO have effective procedures for protecting and disposing of respondents’ data. The Statistics Act specifies penalties for respondents who do not supply relevant data. However, the NSO prefers to use persuasion in such cases.

Resources

Staff and computer resources are sufficient to perform existing tasks. However, the speed of development work is slow, owing to staff restrictions. Staff are well trained, and turnover is low. The existing accommodation is conducive to good working conditions. Effective procedures ensure the efficient use of resources.

Relevance

At an annual workshop, open to any interested person, the NESDB and other participants can raise any statistical issues. Mechanisms exist to raise issues outside this program, if necessary. The NESDB is active internationally, taking part in as many meetings and seminars as possible. The NESDB undertakes user surveys to identify new and emerging data requirements.

Other quality management

Management does not have a formal quality program, but is committed to data quality and cascades this down through the ranks. This issue is also covered in staff training. The NESDB also takes every opportunity to demonstrate its commitment to quality to the wider community. Management monitors quality and forms an integral part of the planning process.
Professionalism

The NESDB Act establishes the independence of the NESDB. The Secretary-General can only be appointed, and dismissed, by the Prime Minister. Professionalism is actively promoted and supported within the NESDB. For instance, recruitment and promotion are based on ability and expertise. All staff receive internal on-the job training in relevant subjects. Every opportunity also is taken to attend international courses and seminars. Peer group reviews of work processes are regularly undertaken. Staff are encouraged to write and publish methodological articles. The NESDB is free to choose whatever it considers are appropriate data sources and methodologies. It also decides on the method and timing of data dissemination. The NESDB undertakes press conferences to explain its data to the media and, thus, the chance of misinterpretation is reduced. When such misinterpretation does take place, appropriate corrective action is taken. All media references to statistics are identified and circulated within the NESDB.

Transparency

The terms and conditions under which the national accounts are produced are given in the relevant publications and on the NESDB website. The NESDB publications identify where additional information can be found. No other government agency has access to the statistics prior to their public release. Publications clearly identify the NESDB by name and its logo. The NESDB requests that, whenever its data appear in the publications of other bodies, the source is clearly identified. All major changes to statistics are announced in advance in the relevant NESDB publications and on its website. Minor changes are just noted when they are introduced.

Ethical standards

There is no written guidance on ethical standards. However, all staff are regularly reminded of the need to keep data confidential. National accounts compilers are guided by the Code of Conduct for Public Servants.
Table 2b.Thailand: Assessment of Data Quality—Dimensions 0 and 1—Fiscal Policy Office in the Ministry of Finance
0. Prerequisites of quality1. Assurances of integrity
Legal and institutional environment

The FPO in the MOF compiles and disseminates a broad range of economic and fiscal data in accordance with the Official Information Act, B.E. 2540 (1997). The responsibility for collecting, processing, and disseminating government finance statistics (GFS) according to the GFSM 2001 is assigned to the FPO in a ministerial regulation on the Organization of the Fiscal Policy Office, B.E. 2545 (2002), Section 8, number 4 (2). Formal arrangements and procedures, through the establishment of a GFS Committee, have been set among the FPO, source data-producing agencies, and other macroeconomic statistics compilers. Individual reporters’ data are kept confidential and used for statistical purposes only in accordance with the Official Information Act. Statistical reporting is normally ensured through the GFS Committee and, as a last resort, the Official Information Act.

Resources

While adequate to perform their existing tasks, the number of staff assigned to GFS compilation will not suffice to perform any further development in the migration to full accrual accounting at all levels of government. Owing to a relatively high rate of staff turnover, a core group of staff with extensive GFS knowledge does not exist in the FPO, with the exception of the head of the division. Facilities, as well as computer and financial resources, are adequate. Sufficient measures have been implemented to ensure the efficient use of resources.

Relevance

The relevance and practical utility of GFS are monitored regularly through a users’ survey on the FPO’s GFS website. On a formal and informal basis, the FPO regularly consults with policy departments and other users, such as the NESDB, on the relevance and usefulness of the GFS.

Other quality management

A recently introduced quality standard for government agencies is the main guiding principle for data quality management. The FPO has been certified under the data quality standard of this program. Adequate processes are in place to monitor the quality of the GFS program, such as obtaining feedback and data quality surveys from users.
Professionalism

A general culture of professionalism is continuously promoted in the FPO (and the rest of the MOF). GFS compilers are committed to compiling statistics according to the GFSM 2001 methodology and are not influenced, in any way, by any fiscal policy analysis or other considerations. Recruiting procedures ensure that GFS compilers are suitably qualified. The FPO is taking several measures to prevent the misinterpretation or misuse of its statistics, e.g., through posting comprehensive metadata on its website and explanatory materials in the Fiscal Journal, as well as in monthly press releases on GFS. If GFS data are used incorrectly or misinterpreted, the FPO is allowed to comment and/or provide further explanations.

Transparency

The code of practice in terms of data collection, processing, dissemination, and analysis is published on the FPO and MOF websites and is readily available to the public. The FPO, MOF, and SDDS websites report that there is no internal governmental access to the GFS prior to their release. It is clearly identified that the GFS are produced by the FPO and, where relevant, the data sources are clearly identified. Should there be major changes in methodology or source data, the policy is to inform users in advance.

Ethical standards

GFS compilers are guided by the Code of Conduct for Public Servants and the Code of Practice for compiling GFS.
Table 2c.Thailand: Assessment of Data Quality—Dimensions 0 and 1—Bank of Thailand
0. Prerequisites of quality1. Assurances of integrity
Legal and institutional environment

The BOT collects, compiles, and disseminates monetary and balance of payments (BOP) statistics. Compilation is undertaken under the Bank of Thailand Act, B.E. 2485 (1942) and regulated under several statutory orders, namely the Commercial Banking Act, B.E. 2505, the Act on the Undertaking of Finance Business, Securities Business and Credit Fonciers, B.E. 2522, and the Exchange Control Act, B.E. 2485. There is no explicit legal mandate for compiling BOP statistics, but the BOT’s authority to do so is not challenged. Reporting under these Acts is mandatory, but the Acts do not cover sufficient data sources for BOP compilation. Existing regulations safeguard the confidentiality of individual reporters’ data and impose penalties on those who might disclose these data. Adequate data-sharing arrangements are in place within the BOT to ensure the efficient and timely flow of monetary and BOP statistics source data to the BOT and its pertinent departments.

Resources

Staff resources are adequate to compile monetary and BOP statistics. Staff are knowledgeable of the statistical methodologies and have attended in-house training courses and training courses organized by the IMF and regional organizations. Compilation processes are highly computerized, and computer systems are regularly updated.

Relevance

Mechanisms are in place to monitor users’ needs, including periodic meetings with targeted users. Users’ surveys are conducted every two years. Staff members participate in statistical meetings and seminars organized by international and regional organizations. Users’ feedback is also encouraged through the publication of the telephone number and e-mail address of the staff responsible for each dataset.

Other quality management

The BOT has well-built processes for managing the quality of the statistical process and products. These include the role of the Data Management Committee and the Statistical Code of Practice, which are closely aligned with international best practices. Operational audits of the data sources and compilation process are conducted regularly.
Professionalism

The Ministry of Finance oversees the overall affairs of the BOT according to the Bank of Thailand Act but, in practice, the BOT is empowered to formulate the policies and procedures deemed necessary to carry out its central bank responsibilities. Professionalism is actively promoted within the BOT, and compilers feel that they are free from undue influence or pressures from upper management and outside agencies in the conduct of their duties of compiling statistics. Professionalism is supported by the BOT recruitment and personnel policies, which take into account a candidate’s professional and educational qualifications, and promotions are merit-based. In addition, the BOT has in place a proactive culture change program to entrench in the staff the BOT shared values, core purpose, and vision, and to facilitate the buildup of relations with the staff of other reporting institutions.

Transparency

The terms and conditions under which monetary and BOP statistics are collected, processed, and disseminated are posted on the BOT’s website. There is no internal governmental access to statistics prior to their release. All BOT statistics publications are clearly identified with its name, logo, and insignia. Users are informed in advance of major changes in methodology of the monetary and BOP statistics.

Ethical standards

The BOT’s Code of Conduct provides clear guidelines on the staff’s behavior and ethical standards, and the Statistical Code of Practice provides additional guidelines on the adherence to the principle of objectivity in the collection, compilation, and dissemination of statistics. New staff are made aware of the guidelines when they join the organization and are reminded periodically, namely, at the time of the annual performance reviews.
Table 3a.Thailand: Assessment of Data Quality—Dimensions 2 to 5—National Accounts
2. Methodological soundness3. Accuracy and reliability4. Serviceability5. Accessibility
Concepts and definitions

The national accounts are broadly in line with the 1968 SNA, but are in the process of being updated to the 1993 SNA. However, this is not expected to be completed until 2008.

Scope

The published data cover annual and quarterly GDP, from both the production and expenditure approaches, and at current and constant prices. Some outputs, such as annual supply and use tables, are not produced. The production and asset boundaries generally conform to the 1968 SNA.

Classification/sectorization

All transactions and flows use appropriate international classifications.

Basis for recording

The valuation rules used for recording flows and stocks are generally in accordance with the 1968 SNA. However, output and value added are shown at market, rather than producer, prices. All government data are recorded on a cash, rather than accrual, basis. Also, average monthly, rather than daily, exchange rates are used.
Source data

An economic census of businesses is undertaken every 10 years and updated in the intervening years. There are biennial surveys of all establishments. Various sources, such as other ministries, are used to derive estimates for the intervening periods. A household socioeconomic survey is run every two years.

Assessment of source data

The NESDB routinely assesses source data.

Statistical techniques

Extensive use is made of benchmark data, but only for two to three years. The base year for the constant price figures is 1988, which is far too old.

Assessment and validation of intermediate data and statistical outputs

Source data are routinely checked against other available data. There is a statistical discrepancy between the production and expenditure figures. These are investigated and adjustments are made when necessary.

Revision studies

Revision studies are undertaken and used to improve the statistics.
Periodicity and timeliness

Quarterly GDP estimates are published two months after the end of the period, in line with the SDDS requirements.

Consistency

The quarterly estimates are fully consistent with the annual figures. The current and constant price figures are totally comparable. The statistical discrepancy is shown separately in the publications. It is generally less than 1 percent for the annual figures. The figures for imports and exports are totally consistent with those produced by the BOT. The figures for general government are reconcilable with the government finance statistics produced by the MOF.

Revision policy and practice

There is a well-established revision policy, which is fully explained to users. Any changes outside this cycle are clearly noted in the publications. Preliminary data are clearly indicated in the publications. The results of the revision studies are noted in the publications. However, a time-series analysis of the revisions is not published to allow an assessment of the reliability of preliminary data.
Data accessibility

The GDP figures are published in a clear manner with different levels of detail, as appropriate to the specific publication. Analyses of the current period developments are also given. An advance release calendar is published. The data are available to all users at the same time via a press release, publications, and the NESDB website. Some additional breakdowns can be supplied as long as they do not breach the confidentiality rules. However, this service is not advertised.

Metadata accessibility

There is a methodological guide for the quarterly GDP figures, in Thai and English. However, this should be more comprehensive, and also cover the annual figures. The NESDB updates the SDDS metadata as soon as a change occurs. Some more general sets of metadata are produced to meet the needs of a wider audience.

Assistance to users

Specific contact points for each topic, as well as a catalog of the NESDB’s products, are given on the NESDB website. Details for the national accounts are given in the quarterly publication.
Table 3b.Thailand: Assessment of Data Quality—Dimensions 2 to 5—Government Finance Statistics
2. Methodological soundness3. Accuracy and reliability4. Serviceability5. Accessibility
Concepts and definitions

Monthly, quarterly, and annual GFS (including debt) are compiled and disseminated according to the GFSM 2001, and an official migration path is followed to implement fully by 2009 the GFSM 2001 for all of general government.

Scope

GFS cover the operations of the consolidated general government sector, all its subsectors, and the consolidated nonfinancial public sector. GFS currently cover all economic stocks and flows, except for a full balance sheet and a statement of other economic flows. Debt of social security funds (an immaterial amount) and local governments are not included in GFS.

Classification/sectorization

The general government sector and nonfinancial public corporations are defined in accordance with the 1993 SNA and GFSM 2001. All GFS aggregates and components are classified in accordance with the GFSM 2001 methodology.

Basis for recording

Flows are recorded at market prices, but not available stocks—liabilities are recorded at face value. Not all general government data are on an accrual basis.
Source data

Although the source data collection programs are broadly adequate for the compilation of GFS, there is room for improvement. Local government data for the latest two years have to be estimated. With the introduction of accrual accounting and the GFMIS at the budgetary central government level in 2004/05, there have been unexpected problems in the timeliness and availability of monthly and quarterly source data for budgetary central government and some of the extrabudgetary funds. Not all sources are yet on an accrual basis and/or using market prices as valuation.

Assessment of source data

The source data are routinely assessed and verified against other sources. Issues are resolved through the GFS Committee and direct contacts.

Statistical techniques

Statistical techniques (including the estimation of local government data) employed to compile GFS are sound.

Assessment and validation of intermediate data and statistical outputs

All results are cross-checked with the relevant GFS Committee members’ data.

Revision studies

Revision studies are carried out routinely to improve the estimates of local government data.
Periodicity and timeliness

The GFS disseminated by the FPO follow the SDDS requirements for timeliness and periodicity.

Consistency

GFS are internally consistent and also consistent or reconcilable for the period 1990 to present. The GFS are largely consistent with the national accounts, BOP, and monetary statistics. Small differences are reconcilable.

Revision policy and practice

Preliminary data are replaced with actual data when they become available. This policy follows a clear schedule, which is posted on the FPO website. Preliminary and revised data are clearly identified. When estimated local government data are replaced with actual data, no analysis of differences between the revised and estimated data is published to allow an assessment of the reliability of the preliminary data.
Data accessibility

GFS accessibility is adequate. Time series of the GFS are disseminated according to the standard components, statements, and tables of the GFSM 2001 on the MOF and FPO’s websites, in monthly press releases, and in other FPO publications. GFS are released to all users at the same time, strictly according to an advance release calendar posted on the FPO website. Users are invited on the website to request statistics not routinely disseminated.

Metadata accessibility

The FPO and MOF websites include a detailed document Thailand’s GFS: Information on Methodology, Data Coverage, and Compilation Practices. The complete GFSM 2001, translated in Thai, is also posted on these websites. Simplified metadata on GFS also exist to accommodate a varied audience.

Assistance to users

The FPO and MOF websites include complete contact information for GFS, as well as a complete list of all FPO publications available in its e-library.
Table 3c.Thailand: Assessment of Data Quality—Dimensions 2 to 5—Monetary Statistics
2. Methodological soundness3. Accuracy and reliability4. Serviceability5. Accessibility
Concepts and definitions

The concepts and definitions conform to the methodology of the MFSM.

Scope

Coverage of monetary statistics includes all depository corporations, except money market, mutual funds, and credit cooperatives. However, cooperatives and mutual funds represent less than 5 percent of total deposit-like liabilities.

Classification/sectorization

Sectorization of institutional units is in line with the MFSM. Classification of financial instruments is in line with the MFSM, except for financial derivatives, which are classified as off-balance sheet positions.

Basis for recording

The basis for recording generally follows the MFSM methodology: (1) uses market prices or fair prices for valuation, except for securities intended for investment purposes recorded at book values; (2) relies on accrual accounting; and (3) performs grossing and netting operations, as recommended.
Source data

Source data are obtained from a comprehensive and up-to-date register of all financial institutions. They provide sufficient detail to identify financial instruments and counterpart sectors, and approximate the definitions, valuation, and time of recording recommended in the MFSM. The source data are timely.

Assessment of source data

Procedures to assess source data are sound. Balance sheet data are routinely reviewed, and banks are consulted for clarification when unusual movements in the data are detected.

Statistical techniques

Statistical techniques are sound. The compilation process is highly automated. Electronic compilation procedures minimize errors.

Assessment and validation of intermediate data and statistical outputs

The intermediate data are assessed and validated against available information, namely, the information provided by the register for government securities.

Revision studies

Revisions are carried out and used to inform the data collection and compilation process.
Periodicity and timeliness

The periodicity and timeliness are in line with the SDDS requirements.

Consistency

Monetary statistics are consistent within the dataset. Consistent time series following the 1986 guidelines are available. However, data compiled according to the MFSM only start in January 2005, and main aggregates are not always easily reconcilable. Monetary statistics are consistent with BOP and government finance statistics.

Revision policy and practice

The revision cycle is predetermined, stable, and communicated to users through the BOT’s quarterly bulletin and website. The reasons underlying the revision cycle and the revisions are explained to the public. The magnitude of the revisions is normally negligible.
Data accessibility

Presentation of monetary statistics is generally clear, dissemination media are adequate, and the statistics are released on a preannounced schedule. Statistics are made available to all users at the same time, and no users outside the Data Management Department (DMD) have prior access. Unpublished nonconfidential data are available to users on request.

Metadata accessibility

Methodological notes are posted on the BOT’s website, which is hyperlinked to the IMF’s DSBB. Other brief and more detailed methodological notes are found in the BOT’s bulletins.

Assistance to users

The BOT provides adequate assistance to users, and contact information is provided in the BOT’s publications and website. All questions receive a response within three working days. A list of publications, calendar of dissemination, and prices is available on the BOT’s website. Each statistical publication includes subscription forms.
Table 3d.Thailand: Assessment of Data Quality—Dimensions 2 to 5—Balance of Payments Statistics
2. Methodological soundness3. Accuracy and reliability4. Serviceability5. Accessibility
Concepts and definitions

The BOP concepts and definitions follow the provisions of BPM5 and other international best practice.

Scope

In general, the scope is consistent with guidelines and good practices. However, some data on foreign trade not recorded by customs are not included in the BOP, in particular, smuggling, Internet commerce, and shuttle trade. Data on services and income are not fully recorded, owing to data source constraints.

Classification/sectorization

The BOT follows broadly the sectorization and classification recommended by the BPM5. Deviations exist with regard to transfers and various current account items. Reinvested earnings are not included in the BOP.

Basis for recording

The BOT records transactions at market prices or uses appropriate proxies. However, the recording principles mix cash and accrual accounting, owing to constraints in the source data. In BOP, data disseminated by the BOT value imports c.i.f rather than f.o.b.
Source data

Data collection programs are not fully comprehensive. Customs and foreign exchange records are the most important data sources, but IIP, external debt, and tourist expenditure surveys are also used. Further sources complementary to the ITRS should be developed. Data sourcing is done in a timely fashion.

Assessment of source data

Source data are routinely assessed.

Statistical techniques

Data compilation, estimation, and adjustments are carried out using sound techniques.

Assessment and validation of intermediate data and statistical outputs

In general, sound methods are used for assessing and validating data at all stages of the compilation process. Most financial accounts data are reconcilable with the international investment position, but the lack of secondary data prevents the checking of some data categories.

Revision studies

Revision studies are carried out in sufficient detail. Results of the studies are used for fine-tuning preliminary data of most items, with the important exception of trade data.
Periodicity and timeliness

BOP data are compiled monthly and published on a monthly, quarterly, and annual basis via the BOT website. Monthly data are available within two months, while quarterly and annual data are available within three months, consistent with the SDDS requirements.

Consistency

BOP data are consistent over time. Data are also internally consistent and reconcilable with related datasets.

Revision policy and practice

There is a sound and transparent revision policy. Revisions are carried out quarterly for some items and annually for others, depending on data availability. However, revision studies are not published.
Data accessibility

BOP data are clearly presented and easily accessible through the BOT website and its statistical publications. A publication schedule is published. Only staff of the DMD of the BOT, who are directly involved in compilation, have prior access to data. Detailed data not published routinely are available from the BOT on request, and contact details are easily available.

Metadata accessibility

Metadata are available from the statistical bulletin and the website of the BOT, and are sufficiently detailed.

Assistance to users

The BOT publishes detailed contact information for each subject field for questions and comments. All questions receive a response within three working days. A catalog of publications is also available.

III. Staff’s Recommendations

10. Based on the review of Thailand’s statistical practices, discussions with the data-producing agencies, and responses from data users (see Appendix III of the Detailed Assessments volume), the mission has a set of recommendations. They are designed to increase further Thailand’s adherence to internationally accepted statistical practices and would, in the mission’s view, enhance the analytical usefulness of Thailand’s statistics. Some additional technical suggestions are included in the Detailed Assessments volume.

National Accounts

  • Change the base year for the volume figures every year or, at least, every five years.

  • Expedite the full conversion to the 1993 SNA.

  • Disseminate a more detailed methodological guide for the national accounts in hard copy and/or on the NESDB’s website.

Government Finance Statistics

  • Explore ways to include monthly data for the seven extrabudgetary funds that are excluded from the 2004/05 and 2005/06 data, so that the monthly (and quarterly) time series for the consolidated central government are consistent and comparable with the earlier data.

  • Resolve problems with the GFMIS so that monthly (and quarterly) accrual data can be produced for the budgetary central government.

Monetary Statistics

  • Include financial derivatives now recorded as off-balance sheet positions in monetary statistics.

  • Reconstruct the monetary statistics following the MFSM as far back in time as possible.

Balance of Payments Statistics

  • Develop comprehensive data sources (covering unrecorded trade, services, income, transfers, and the financial account) to complement the existing administrative data from the ITRS.

  • Strengthen the BOT’s legal mandate to compile and disseminate balance of payments statistics, including provisions for mandatory reporting of balance of payments source data by all resident units.

Appendix I: Thailand: Practices Compared to the SDDS Coverage, Periodicity, and Timeliness of Data
SDDS Data CategoryCoverage (meets SDDS)PeriodicityTimelinessComments
SDDSThailandSDDSThailand
Real Sector
National accountsYesQQ1Q11W
Production indexYesMM6W (1M encouraged)4W
EmploymentYesQQ1Q3M
UnemploymentYesQQ1Q3M
Wages/earningsYesQQ1Q3M
Price index: consumer pricesYesMM1MNLT 1W
Price index: producer pricesYesMM1MNLT 1W
Fiscal Sector
General government or public sector operationsYesAA2Q2Q
Central government operationsYesMM1M1M
Central government. debtYesQM1QNLT 2M
Financial Sector
Analytical accounts of the banking sectorYesMM1MNLT 1M
Analytical accounts of the central bankYesM (W recommended)W (Key components of BOT’s assets and liabilities

M (reserve money and SDDS prescribed components)
2W (1W encouraged)1W
Interest ratesYesDD1D1D
Stock market: share price indexYesDD1D1D
External Sector
Balance of paymentsYesQQ1QNLT 1Q
International reserves and foreign currency liquidityYesM (W recommended)W for official reserves assets

M for reserves template data
1W for official reserves assets

1M (1W encouraged for the reserves template
NLT 1W for official reserves assets
Merchandise tradeYesMM8W (4–6W encouraged)NLT 1M
International Investment positionYesA (Q recommended)A3Q (1Q encouraged)9M
External debtYesQQ1Q1Q
Exchange ratesYesDD1D1D
Socio-demographic data
PopulationYesAM1M
Note: Periodicity and timeliness: (D) daily; (W) weekly or with a lag of no more than one week from the reference data or the closing of the reference week; (M) monthly or with a lag of no more than one month; (Q) quarterly or with a lag of no more than one quarter; (A) annually; (…) not applicable; and (NLT) not later than.Italics indicate encouraged categories.
Note: Periodicity and timeliness: (D) daily; (W) weekly or with a lag of no more than one week from the reference data or the closing of the reference week; (M) monthly or with a lag of no more than one month; (Q) quarterly or with a lag of no more than one quarter; (A) annually; (…) not applicable; and (NLT) not later than.Italics indicate encouraged categories.

Due to technical problems with the implementation of the Government Finance Management Information System (GFMIS) and accrual accounting, the timeliness of the monthly data does not fully meet SDDS standards. This is indicated in a note on the National Data Summary Page on the DSBB.

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