Decisions on the planning and implementation of EU policies are based on reliable and comparable statistics. In order to ensure comparable statistics at the level of the European Union, the European Statistical System (ESS) has been established, representing a partnership between Eurostat ‒ the statistical office of the European Union, national statistical institutes and other national statistical authorities responsible for the development, production and dissemination of European statistics in each Member State.
The ESS includes European Economic Area countries (Member States of the European Union, Liechtenstein, Norway and Iceland) and Switzerland.
Member States collect data and compile statistics for national purposes, but also for the purposes of the European Union. The ESS functions as a network in which Eurostat’s role is to harmonise statistics in close cooperation with national statistical institutes, in order to enable the development, production and dissemination of European Statistics and the availability of high quality official statistics at the national and European level.