National Statistics Office of Georgia, the legal entity of public law, carries out its activities independently. It is an institution established to produce the statistics and disseminate the statistical information according to the Georgian legislation. National Statistics Office of Georgia is established by the Law of Georgia, dd 11 December 2009, on Official Statistics.
Besides, the activities of the Geostat are based on the basic principles of the official statistics:
1. Relevance, Impartiality and Equal Access - official statistics provide an indispensable element in the information system of a democratic society, serving the Government, the economy and the public with data about the economic, demographic, social and environmental situation. To this end, official statistics that meet the test of practical utility are to be compiled and made available on an impartial basis by official statistical agencies to honour citizens' entitlement to public information.
2. Professional Standards, Scientific Principles, and Professional Ethics - to retain trust in official statistics, the statistical agencies need to decide according to strictly professional considerations, including scientific principles and professional ethics, on the methods and procedures for the collection, processing, storage, and presentation of statistical data.
3. Accountability and Transparency - to facilitate a correct interpretation of the data, the statistical agencies are to pre-sent information according to scientific standards on the sources, methods and procedures of the statistics.
4. Prevention of Misuse - the statistical agencies are entitled to comment on erroneous interpretation and misuse of statistics.
5. Sources of Official Statistics - data for statistical purposes may be drawn from all types of sources, be they statistical surveys or administrative records. Statistical agencies are to choose the source with regard to quality, timeliness, costs and the burden on respondents.
6. Confidentiality - individual data collected by statistical agencies for statistical compilation, whether they refer to natural or legal persons, are to be strictly confidential and used exclusively for statistical purposes.
7. Legislation - the laws, regulations and measures under which the statistical systems operate are to be made public.
8. National Coordination - coordination among statistical agencies within countries is essential to achieve consistency and efficiency in the statistical system.
9. Use of International Standards - the use by statistical agencies in each country of international concepts, classifications and methods promotes the consistency and efficiency of statistical systems at all official levels.
10. International Cooperation - bilateral and multilateral cooperation in statistics contributes to the improvement of systems of official statistics in all countries.
In view of the principles the Geostat shall closely cooperate with the international and local organizations to achieve effective production of official statistics.
The goal of international cooperation in the field of statistics is to introduce the international practice and methodology and share relevant experience based on the agreements and treaties concluded with the international organizations engaged in this field, while cooperation with the local organizations means the cooperation and coordination of the Geostat with the bodies producing the statistics in order to effectively produce the statistics. .
Reforming the National Statistics Office shall ensure the high degree of independence of the statistical body. It is necessary to widely declare the independence so that the Statistics Office can obtain the trust in order to implement its main function that is uninterrupted provision of the useful, high quality information to the public, to the decision makes, to the analysts and politicians both within the Governmental groups and beyond. The Fundamental Principles of Official Statistics developed by United Nations Statistical Commission state that `to retain trust in official statistics, the statistical agencies need to decide according to strictly professional considerations, including scientific principles and professional ethics, on the methods and procedures for the collection, processing, storage and presentation of statistical data”. The fundamental principles were used as the most significant guideline in the course of drafting the Law and consequently establishing the Geostat.
The basic functions of the Geostat are as follows:
- Work out a unified policy for the field of statistics and secure coordinated cooperation with its territorial units and other bodies producing the statistics;
- Work out a statistical activity program;
- Carry out statistical activities set out in the statistical activity program, which includes the following:
Conduct the census of the population;
Produce the annual progress report;
Establish statistical territorial units and define their scope of work.
- Conduct of statistical surveys;
- Process the administrative data exclusively for the statistical purpose;
- Process the data on the observation unit;
- Produce the schedule in regard of promulgation of the statistical data and ensure its publicity;
- Disseminate the statistical data in observance of the schedule and secure the equal access to the statistical data for all the users;
- Work out the statistical methodology and standards in line with their international analogues and facilitate their introduction;
The Executive Director of the Geostat, who also acts as the Chairman of the Board of the Geostat, shall lead the Geostat. The Prime-Minister of Georgia appoints the Executive Director, a member of the Geostat Board nominated by the Board, for the term of 4 years and dismisses the Executive Director. The Executive Director shall have at least one Deputy Director who shall carry out the responsibilities of the Director in case of his absence.
The functions of Executive Director shall be the following:
- Lead the Geostat;
- Develop the statistical standards and methodology to be used in the course of carrying out statistical activities and submit them for approval to the Board of the Geostat;
- Develop the statistical activity program and submit it for approval to the Prime-Minister of Georgia
- Work out the methodology in compliance with the international standards for census of the population and submit it for approval to the Board of the Geostat;
- Develop the population census program and submit it for approval to the Governmental Coordination Commission for Census;
- Develop the list of staff and the salary funds and submit them for approval to the Board of the Geostat;
- Appoint and dismiss the staff members of the Geostat;
- Work out the draft budget of the Geostat according to the statistical activity program;
- Submit the Geostat’s annual progress report to the Prime-Minister of Georgia and the Parliament of Georgia;
- Ensure publicity of the Geostat’s annual progress report approved by the Board of the Geostat;
- Carry out the other functions as defined by the charter of the Geostat and the Georgian legislation.
The Executive Director shall be authorized to invite foreign or local experts on the contractual basis in accordance with the recommendations of the members of Board of the Geosat in order to ensure effective operation of the Geostat.
The Board of Geostat functions at the Geostat and consists of seven members and the Chairman of the Board.
Out of three members of the Board one member shall be a representative of the National Bank of Georgia, one member shall be a representative of the Ministry of Economic Development of Georgia, and one member shall be representative of the Ministry of Finance of Georgia. The managers of relevant agencies shall submit for approval the nominations of the candidates to the Prime-Minister of Georgia. The other five members of the Board shall not be public servants. They are appointed by the Prime-Minister of Georgia at the consent of the Parliament of Georgia in accordance of the procedures defined in the Law on Official Statistics.
The activity of the Board consists of multiple aspects; specifically it consists of submitting relevant recommendations in regard of the statistical activity as well as reviewing and approving the annual progress reports of the Geostat. The Board also reviews and approves the statistical standards and methodology developed by the Geostat, works out recommendations, or acceptance of the international standards and methodology along with drafting and approving the charter of the Board, which shall include the operational and decision-making procedures of the Board.
Termination of Authority of a Board member and the Executive Director shall be carried out on the following basis:
- A personal statement made by the member;
- The member has been declared legally incapable, or has been declared missing or dead by a court;
- A court judgment of guilty against the member has entered in legal force;
- In case of the member of the Board who is a public servant:
In case of the member of the Board who is not a public servant:
- a) Violation of the requirements of the legislation of Georgia governing the conflict of interests;
- b) Termination of holding a relevant position in the public service.
In case of the Executive Director of the Geostat:
- a) Elapse of the term of office as a member of the Board;
- b) Failure to carry out the authority as a member of the Board during 2 months for an illegitimate reason;
- c) Fill in a position in the public service.
- a) Violation of the requirements of the legislation of Georgia governing the conflict of interests;
- b) The term of office of the Executive Director elapsed.
The authority of a member of the Board shall be terminated by the Decree of the Prime-Minister of Georgia.
The Executive Director is dismissed by the Prime-Minister of Georgia.
Based on the function defined in Subparagraph H, Paragraph 3, Article 3 of the Organic Law of Georgia on the National Bank of Georgia in the field of the official statistics, the function of the National bank of Georgia is to produce the statistics in compliance with the international standards and methodology.
The state and local self-government bodies, legal entities of public law and other administrative bodies shall produce the official statistics taking into consideration the goals and objectives of their activities, and responsibilities observing the methodology and standards which are in line with their international analogues and are approved/recognized by the Board of Geostat.
The Geostat shall secure coordinated work with the official statistics producing bodies and shall issue recommendations on the statistical standards and methodology necessary for producing the statistics. The Geostat shall coordinate exchange of information among the administrative bodies in order to produce the statistics and shall facilitate effective implementation of the statistical standards and methodology approved.
The Geostat shall be authorized to request from the administrative bodies and other physical and legal entities and receive all the statistical and other information (including confidential information) from them necessary for carrying out its functions.
Upon the request and according to the legislation of Georgia the administrative bodies shall be obliged to provide the Geostat with the information on physical and private entities (including confidential information) available to them.
Statistical data shall be public except for the data which allows for identification of observation unit.
Statistical data, except the census statistical data, shall be stored in hard copy until it is completely published and in electronic form - for 20 years.
Within the statistical activity program the Geostat shall:
- Furnish all the users with the statistical data in electronic form free of charge;
- Charge all the users except the administrative bodies for the printed statistical publications furnished.
Beyond the statistical activity program the revenues to be received from the statistical activities carried out on the contractual basis shall be defined in relevant contracts.
The data collected for the purpose of producing official statistics shall be confidential if it allows for identification of observation unit or it is possible to identify such data through it.
The confidential statistical data shall not be issued or disseminated or used for a non-statistical purpose but for the exceptions envisaged by the Georgian legislation.
When producing the official statistics it is obligatory to destroy or store separately the identity data including the questionnaires containing such data and used for statistical surveys according to the rules defined in the Georgian legislation.
The confidential statistical data collected and processed for the purpose of statistical survey shall not be used or disseminated either for the personal, academic, research or any other activities, by the employees of the units of the Geosat.
The Geostat units shall be obliged to secure dissemination of true statistical data.
Violation of the provisions set out in the present Law by the employees of the Geostat units will lead to imposing a disciplinary responsibility against them.
In view of the guilt and/or the damage inflicted the Executive Director shall impose the following disciplinary penalties: warning, withholding a salary or/and dismissal.
 United Nations Statistical Commission, Special Session, 11- 15 April, 1994.