Zim’s industrial statistics compromised by low responses

21 Nov, 2022 - 00:11 0 Views
Zim’s industrial statistics compromised by low responses

eBusiness Weekly

Business Writer

The country’s industrial statistics are compromised as a result of low response rates by companies, Finance and Economic Development Minister Mthuli Ncube has said.

Speaking at the 2022 African Statistics Day commemoration event in Bulawayo on Friday, Mthuli said the rate of responses to surveys by the corporate sector was worrying as this compromises the quality of data.

He said the period begging 2005 to date witnessed a decline in responses from companies.

“When responses are below 75 percent, that data compromises quality and cannot be used for computation of results that are representative of the situation on the ground,” said Mthuli.

He said below-expectation response rates compromise production of industrial statistics such as volume of manufacturing index, index of mineral production, business confidence index, wholesale trade index, retail trade index, and sectorial capacity utilisation.

“The result is that the same sectors that are failing to respond to Zimstat’s questionnaires end up operating without statistics to inform their decision-making,” said Mthuli.

He, however, applauded the retail sector from where price data is collected and used to calculate inflation.

“The gravity of not responding to Zimstat questionnaires can best be seen by the darkness that would engulf the economy if retailers were noncooperative and making it impossible for Zimstat to compute inflation figures,” he said.

Mthuli called on Business Membership Organisations to conscientize their constituencies on the need to respond to Zimstat questionnaires.

The Census and Statistics Act, [Chapter 10:29], compels establishments to respond to Zimstat questionnaires.

Statistics collected by Zimstat are used by Government, business and Civil Society Organisations to formulate policies and preparation of strategic plans to ensure sustainable development.

However, according to Minister Ncube, production of statistics in not the responsibility of Zimstat alone, as it is achieved by collaboration with different stakeholders from the public sector, private sector and civil organisations as well as local and international players.

“For statistics to meet the required intention of making lives better, overall management of production, analysis and dissemination of statistics must be well coordinated,” he said.

The African Statistics Day was set aside by the African Union to increase public awareness on the important role that statistics play on the continent.

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