The role of statistics in the process of regional integration has been growing in recent years. Most sub-regional organisations include statistical bodies, usually composed of the statistical offices of member countries, leading statistical harmonisation and developing common frameworks for statistical production and processes to support policymaking. Furthermore, some sub-regional organisations have started or are about to start the design of a Regional Strategy for the Development of Statistics (RSDS), targeted at facilitating the achievement and development of the regional statistical systems.
The ASEAN Community Statistical System (ACSS) Committee has developed and has been implementing its strategic plan and multi-year action plan (MYP) through the implementation of its Annual Work Plans (AWP). A mechanism has also been adopted in the form of Rules of Procedure that guides the formulation of the AWP and MYP. However, successful implementation of the ACSS Work Plans at the national level requires greater awareness and support from the respective line ministries and policymakers to ensure that regional needs and concerns are reflected in the National Strategy for the Development of Statistics (NSDS). Stronger support from the respective bodies at the regional level and an established consultation mechanism between the ACSS Committee and stakeholders at the ASEAN bodies are important to ensure that users’ needs are best accounted and that the Statistics Unit of the Secretariat can play a greater role as with the establishment of the ACSS and in meeting the increasing demand for statistics.
In light of the above-described situation, Eurostat and PARIS21 are supporting the Association of South-East Asian Nations (ASEAN) community in advocating for the sustainability of its RSDS: the Strategic Plan for the Establishment of the ASEAN Community Statistical System.
To this end, the ASEAN Secretariat, Eurostat, and PARIS21 co-organised a two-day event, ASEAN Regional Workshop on Strategic Statistical Planning: Towards a stronger ASEAN Community Statistical System, in Jakarta, 28-29 November 2012 back-to-back with the Final Conference of the EU-ASEAN Statistical Capacity Building (EASCAB) Programme which was held on 27 November 2012.