"We really believe that statistics is, for those who possess it, a valuable national wealth… Statistics is the only certain realm on which a careful government should found the reason of its reforms". Dionisie Pop Marțian
Official statistics in Romania are compiled by the official statistical services, which are organized and coordinated by the National Institute of Statistics, specialized body of central general government, legal entity, subordinated to the Government financed from the State budget.
The National Institute of Statistics performs any other tasks assigned through legal acts, under its competence.
The National Institute of Statistics is headed by a President acting as secretary of state, assisted by 3 Vice-Presidents acting as sub-secretaries of state; one of the Vice-Presidents is directly involved in European Affairs issues, the second directly coordinates economic and social statistical activities, while the third directly coordinates the IT activities and statistical infrastructure issues. The Vice-President coordinating statistical matters is, in compliance with specific legislation, the deputy of the NIS President.
The President performs the following general tasks in his field of activity:
a) organizes, coordinates and controls the application of laws, Government ordinances and decisions, of orders and instructions issued in accordance with legal stipulations, observing the authority framework and the principle of local autonomy of public institutions and of economic units;
The NIS President is member by right in the National Statistical Council.
The general secretary of the National Institute of Statistics – high civil servant – is subordinated to the president.
The following entities are subordinated to the National Institute of Statistics:
In order to assure the objectivity, transparency and scientific nature of methodologies, indicators, nomenclatures and classifications used in the statistical activity, the National Statistical Council is functioning besides the National Institute of Statistics, as a consulting body mainly charged with the analysis and endorsement of the national statistical system development strategy, of the National Institute of Statistics’ activity reports and of the Annual National Statistical Programme.
The National Institute of Statistics’ activity mainly envisages the following objectives:
July 12, 1859 - The ruler Alexandru Ioan Cuza signed The Ordinance on the setting up of Central Administrative Statistics Office, marking the birth of official statistics in Romania. The names of two famous Romanian economists of the XIX-th century, Dionisie Pop Marțian and Ion Ionescu de la Brad are also related to this very moment.
Over the years, official statistics, one of the first public institutions created in Romania after the Union and one of oldest statistical offices in Europe has faced evolutions and reorganizations, successively changing its name, while always observing the principles of reliability and probity of its approaches, keeping its status of main instrument of knowledge and evaluation of the country reality, providing, through statistical data and information, the necessary background to the authorities, to economic units, to the entire society, to build up and put into practice some realistic programs of governing, of economic and social development.
I. Start and confirmation (1859-1877)
Since the very beginning, without having the necessary material resources, sufficient and specialized staff, the statistical institution ventured and succeeded to finalise far-reaching actions, gaining fame and prestige. The following were achieved:
· Population Census (1859-1860)
II. Contributions to economic and social consolidation of Romania after gaining the state independence (1877-1914)
In keeping with the pathfinder undertakings, official statistics is one of the main pillars of the Romanian state in the period of its consolidation, through the substantial contribution of statistical information necessary to take accurate decisions for the country development. The following were achieved:
- Population Censuses of 1899 and 1912
III. Romanian statistical school in vanguards of international statistics (1918-1945)
In the interwar period, Romanian official statistics imposed, through its great personalities, its status of a prestigious school at international level. These were the years when the institution took advantage of the creative activity of famous personalities: Dimitrie Gusti, Octav Onicescu, Grigore Moisil, Gheorghe Mihoc, Sabin Manuilă, Anton Golopenția etc.
· Romanian Agriculture Atlas (1929)
IV. Preserving the identity and professional probity (1946-1989)
The years after the World War II, a period of facing many obstacles and difficulties and all kinds of pressure, are however characterized by the efforts of a new generation of statisticians – most of them ex-collaborators and disciples of forerunners – meant to ensure the continuity of statistical data and series and therefore to preserve the Romanian official statistics reliability, in spite of totalitarian regime interferences aiming at convenient and trimmed presentation of some statistical information. Among the efforts made to safeguard the identity of statistical science and of its civil servants professional probity, there are well known the contributions of Mihail Levente and Mircea Biji, of other remarkable specialists, to the following:
· Carrying out very complex statistical works
V. Towards a digitised information society, a modern and dynamic economy, serving the state of law and the Romanian and European democratic values
· The capacity of investigating and measuring the economic and social evolution in the Romanian society increased.
The name of the official statistical institution was subject to several changes:
State General Statistical Directorate – 1892
Last update: May 2, 2019