‘BBS needs more accuracy’

Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics (BBS) needs more accuracy as all the important information comes from BBS, especially in formulating long-term plans for the country, says Planning Minister MA Mannan.

He said the government is dependent on the BBS’s information for formulating any development plan. 

The Planning Minister came up with the statement while attending as the chief guest at a book unveiling ceremony of the BBS Glossary (Concepts and Definition) on BBS premises in the capital on Thursday.

Mohammad Tajul Islam, Director General of the BBS, presided over the function. The main article was presented by Dilder Hossain, the director project of the National Strategy for the Development of Statistics (NSDS).

Mannan said, “Since we work for the people, the skills of bureaucrats need to be enhanced. More and more training programs have to be given. At present, in 99 percent of the cases, there is no problem in disclosing government information. There is one percent privacy just because of state security. The media must respect that. In the future, that one percent may no longer need to be kept secret. The government is very transparent.”

Noting that the BBS should not hide any information, the Planning Minister said, “If there is anything terrible in your (BBS’s officials) survey, let the Director General and the Secretary know. Let me know if they think so. I will inform the head of government if I think.”

Muhammad Yamin Chowdhury, secretary of the statistics division, said, “There is controversy over the results of many surveys or censuses. Different people give different explanations. This publication will also put an end to these debates.”

Dilder Hossain said the publication covers agriculture, industry, environment, trade, manufacturing, services, GDP, prices and wages, foreign trade, banking, poverty, education, health, housing, labor force, gender, remittances, demography, fertility, mortality and migration. 

There are 2,041 concepts and definitions on various socio-economic issues, he said adding that, the book would need to be translated into Bengali and updated after every three years. 

However, it was informed at the function that it is necessary to ensure the provision of accurate data for monitoring the progress of SDGs. 

Of the 231 indicators in the SDGs, 100 are directly compiled and provided by BBS. 

Different census and survey or other statistical activities of BBS use different concepts on the same subject. 

As a result, in many cases the information on a subject is different. To overcome this problem, it is necessary to ensure that all census and survey or other statistical activities use the same concept or definition on the same subject.