AT the interest of the planners, policy makers and other data users of the National Statistical System of the country, the Government of Sri Lanka, with the initiative of Dr. P B Jayasundera, Secretary to the Treasury, has established a National Data Committee to create more productive statistical system to fulfill data needs of users within an acceptable timeframe.
This is one of the milestones of the ongoing Statistical Capacity Upgrading Project implemented by the Department of Census and Statistics, which is one of the two components of the Public Sector Capacity Building Project of the Government of Sri Lanka, jointly funded by the World Bank and the Government.
The National Statistical System has a long history of providing salient statistics for planning, policy formulation and monitoring the development functions. The Department of Census and Statistics is the pivotal agency for producing statistical needs of the country while some departments also provide data in their own specific areas in a limited way. Policy planners, local and international research communities, international organisations are some of the important data users of the present National Statistical System.
Statistics play a vital role in decision making and undoubtedly precise, consistent and timely statistics are the essential ingredients for better planning. The prime objective of the National Data Committee is to strengthen the existing statistical system by acting as a coordinating body between data producers and data users.
The Committee will identify the national statistical priorities and provide necessary guidance to the Department of Census and Statistics and other relevant institutions thereby contributing towards strengthening the National Statistical System of the country.
The NDC will be chaired by Udaya Seneviratne, Deputy Secretary to the Treasury and the core Members of Committee are the Management level officers of the Departments of Census and Statistics; National Planning; and the representatives from the Presidential Secretariat, Central Bank of Sri Lanka Demographic Department of the University of Colombo, Institute of Policy. Representatives from other ministries, public and private sector institutions will also be invited to the Committee as and when necessary.