National accounts

Period: Annual
Year: 2020

01. Contact
02. Metadata update
03. Statistical presentation
04. Unit of measure
05. Reference Period
06. Institutional Mandate
07. Confidentiality
08. Release policy
09. Frequency of dissemination
10. Accessibility and clarity
11. Quality management
12. Relevance
13. Accuracy and reliability
14. Timeliness and punctuality
15. Coherence and comparability
16. Cost and Burden
17. Data revision
18. Statistical processing
19. Comment

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01. ContactTop
01.1. Contact organisation

Statistical Office of the Republic of Serbia


01.2. Contact organisation unit

National Accounts


01.3. Contact name

Dušan Gavrilović


01.4. Contact person function

Assistant director


01.5. Contact mail address

5 Milana Rakića, Belgrade


01.6. Contact email address


01.7. Contact phone number

Phone:   +381 11 2403 154

               +381 11 2412 922 ext. 381

Mobile: +381 62 88 27 536


02. Metadata updateTop
02.1. Metadata last certified
02.2. Metadata last posted
02.3. Metadata last update

03. Statistical presentationTop
03.1. Data description

National accounts data concern all data produced and disseminated for an economy according to the definitions and guidelines of the European System of Accounts (ESA 2010).

National accounts provide data for the total economy, but may also include breakdowns of the total economy (into sectors, industries, products, regions, etc.). National accounts provide data for several domains: annual and quarterly national accounts (main aggregates), sector accounts, financial accounts [1], supply and use and input-output tables [2], regional accounts and government finance statistics [3].

One of the main aggregates of national accounts is the change rate of the price-adjusted gross domestic product (GDP), which indicates the economic development of a country or region and, is also referred to as economic growth rate. Namely, this change rate is the result of the GDP calculations at constant prices aimed to indicate the dynamic processes in real terms, irrespective of price changes. National accounts data concern all data produced and disseminated for an economy according to the definitions and guidelines of the European System of Accounts (ESA 2010).


[1] In the Republic of Serbia, the National Bank of Serbia is responsible for compiling financial accounts.

[2] Supply and use tables are available for the period 2010-2019, and input-output tables are available for 2010 and 2015.

[3] To Eurostat are provided only: TP table T0900 - Detailed tax and social contribution receipts by type of tax or social contribution and receiving subsector for General Government, NTL - Detailed list of taxes and social contributions according to national classification as well as EDP tables and Questionnaires related to EDP notification tables (1.2, 4, 5, 9.1).


03.2. Classification system

The ESA 2010 provides a methodology on common standards, definitions, internationally harmonised classifications and accounting rules that are used for compiling national accounts on comparable bases.

The ESA 2010 defines classifications to be used for: institutional sectors, transactions in products, transactions in non-financial non-produced assets, distributive transactions, transactions in financial assets and liabilities, other changes in assets, balancing and net worth items, balance sheet entries, non-financial assets, financial assets and liabilities.

In addition, for several breakdowns ESA 2010 makes use of other classifications: NACE Rev. 2 for economic activities, CPA 2014  , COFOG for the functions of government, COICOP for individual consumption by purpose, COPNI for classification of the purposes of non-profit institutions serving households, NUTS 2016 for regional breakdowns.


A full overview of classifications is available in:

- ESA 2010 Chapter 23 Classifications

- Eurostat's RAMON classification database

 Classifications used in the compilation of National Accounts


The classification used

Institutional sectors i.e. sectorization of units

Classification of institutional sectors (S) by ESA 2010 / SNA 2008

The activity of units

National Classification of Activities 2010 (KD 2010)[1]

Individual consumption expenditure - household sector

Classification of Individual Consumption by Purpose (COICOP)

General government consumption

Partially by Classification of the Functions of Government (COFOG)

Gross fixed capital formation

Cross-classified by industry and Classification of fixed assets (AN.11)

External trade statistics

·  National version of Combined Nomenclature (CN)

·  Standard International Trade Classification (SITC Rev. 4)

·  Extended Balance of Payments Services classification (EBOPS 2010)

·  IMF methodology BPM6 (Balance of Payments Manual, Sixth Edition, 2009)

Regional accounts

Nomenclature of statistical territorial units of the Republic of Serbia (NSTJ)[2]


[1] The national Classification of Activities 2010 (KD 2010) (Official Gazette of the RS, No.  54/2010) corresponds to the European standard of the Statistical Classification of Economic Activities in the European Community (NACE Rev. 2).

[2] Nomenclature of statistical territorial units of the Republic of Serbia (NSTJ) (Official Gazette of the RS, No.109/2009 and 46/10) has been harmonized with the European Nomenclature of territorial units for statistics (NUTS).


03.3. Coverage - sector

National accounts describe the total economy of a country. All units that have their centre of predominant economic interest in the economic territory of that country are covered.

In addition, several breakdowns of the total are described. Two of the most important breakdowns are the breakdown by institutional sector and the breakdown by NACE Rev. 2 activity. Exhaustiveness is required for each of the breakdown items.

Concerning the institutional sector breakdown, ESA 2010 distinguishes five mutually exclusive domestic institutional sectors (established by grouping resident institutional units): (a) non-financial corporations; (b) financial corporations; (c) general government; (d) households; (e) non-profit institutions serving households. The five sectors together make up the total domestic economy (S.1). Non-resident institutional units, involved in transactions with resident units, create the external sector i.e. the rest of the world (S.2).

Regarding the activity breakdown, ESA 2010 applies NACE Rev.2. Activities can be broken down into several levels of detail, for example into 3, 10, 21, 38, 64 or 88 activities. At the 'highest' level a breakdown into 3 categories is defined: (a) agriculture, forestry and fishing; (b) mining and quarrying, manufacturing, electricity gas steam and air conditioning supply, water supply, sewerage, waste management and remediation activities, construction; (c) services.


03.4. Statistical concepts and definitions

All statistical concepts and definitions to be used in national accounts are described in Annex A of the ESA 2010 Regulation (link to blue book on ESA2010 methodology). The two main sets of tables concern: (a) the institutional sector accounts; (b) the input-output framework, and the accounts by industry.

The sector accounts provide, by institutional sector, a systematic description of the different stages of the economic process: production, generation of income, distribution of income, redistribution of income, use of income and financial and nonfinancial accumulation. The sector accounts also include balance sheets to describe the stocks of assets, liabilities and net worth at the beginning and the end of the accounting period. The variables/concepts described in the sector accounts include transactions in products, transactions in non-produced non-financial assets, distributive transactions, transactions in financial assets and liabilities, other changes in assets, non-financial and financial assets and liabilities.

The input-output framework, through the supply and use tables, sets out in more detail the production process (cost structure, income generated and employment) and the flows of goods and services (output, imports, exports, final consumption, intermediate consumption and capital formation by product group). These variables are broken down by industry (NACE Rev. 2) and product (CPA 2014). SUTs are compiled at a level of detail of 224 product groups and 88 industries.

ESA 2010 also encompasses concepts of population and employment. Such concepts are relevant for the sector accounts, the accounts by industry and the supply and use framework.

Regional accounts provide regional breakdowns for major aggregates such as gross value added by industry, gross fixed capital formation and household income. Regional breakdowns are based on the NUTS classification. National accounts concepts are also used for regional accounts.

In addition, Annex A of the ESA 2010 Regulation addresses and defines numerous other concepts and definitions, such as the definition of: statistical units and their groupings, flows and stocks, accounting rules (valuation, time of recording, consolidation and netting). The main features and principles for the compilation of national accounts can be found in Chapter 1.


03.5. Statistical unit

Following the ESA 2010 guidelines, in national accounts two types of units and two corresponding ways of subdividing the economy are used: (a) institutional unit; (b) local kind-of-activity unit (local KAU). The first type is used for describing income, expenditure and financial flows as well as balance sheets. The second type of units is used for the description of production processes, for input-output analysis and for regional analysis.

An institutional unit is an economic entity characterised by decision-making autonomy in the exercise of its principal function. A resident unit is regarded as constituting an institutional unit in the economic territory where it has its centre of predominant economic interest if it has decision-making autonomy and either keeps a complete set of accounts, or is able to compile a complete set of accounts.

A local KAU groups all the parts of an institutional unit in its capacity as producer which are located in a single site or in closely located sites, and which contribute to the performance of an activity at the class level (four digits) of the NACE Rev. 2.

An institutional unit comprises one or more local KAUs; a local KAU belongs to one and only one institutional unit.

03.6. Statistical population

The national accounts population of a country consists of all resident statistical units (institutional units or local KAUs, see section 3.5). A unit is a resident unit of a country when it has a centre of predominant economic interest on the economic territory of that country, that is, when it engages for an extended period (one year or more) in economic activities on this territory.

National accounts are exhaustive. This means that all resident statistical units are covered.


03.7. Reference area

The reference area for the compilation of the Serbian system of national accounts is the territory of the Republic of Serbia. Nevertheless, starting from 1999 the Statistical Office of the Republic of Serbia has not at disposal and may not provide certain data relative to AP Kosovo and Metohija and therefore these data are not included in the coverage for the Republic of Serbia.

The total economy of a country can be broken down into regions. The NUTS classification provides a single, uniform breakdown of the economic territory of the Member States of the EU.

Current regionalization of the Republic of Serbia according to NUTS methodology


Statistical functional territorial units

NUTS 1  

2 Territorial units (Regions)

NUTS 2  

5 Regions


30 Sub-regions


03.8. Coverage - Time

National accounts data are usually compiled for years and quarters. In general, the ESA 2010 transmission programme requires data starting in 1995 (years) and 1995Q1 (quarters) but some series start later. If backwards data exist, they may have been compiled according to earlier versions of ESA and can present conceptual breaks with those compiled under ESA2010.

Quarterly and annual national accounts are available from 1995 onwards.

Sector accounts are available from 2015 onwards.

Regional accounts data are available from 2010 onwards.

Supply and use tables are available for the period 2010-2019.

Input-output tables are available for 2010 and 2015.


03.9. Base period

The concept of 'base period' is not applied in national accounts. Instead, for some national accounts variables the concepts of previous year's prices and chain-linked volumes are applied, as stipulated in Commission Decision 98/715/EC. Expressing variables at the prices of the previous year allows the calculation of volume indices between the current time period and the previous year. After a reference period is chosen as a benchmark, volume indices can be chain-linked and then applied to variables at current prices of the benchmark year. This generates volume estimates for any period of observation.

The Statistical Office of the Republic of Serbia uses 2015 as reference year for the compilation of chain-linked volumes. The method to compile quarterly chain-linked volumes is the annual overlap method.


04. Unit of measureTop
04. Unit of measure

With the exception of some variables concerning population and labour that are usually expressed in number of persons, hours or jobs, the ESA 2010 system shows all flows and stocks in monetary terms: in national currency (RSD). Flows and stocks shall be measured according to their exchange value, i.e. the value at which flows and stocks are in fact, or could be, exchanged for cash. Market prices are, thus, the ESA's reference for valuation.

In addition to measurement in current (market) prices, some national accounts variables are also expressed in previous year's prices and chain-linked volumes, (see section 3.9). Furthermore, it is possible to derive growth rates, indices, and various other measures (e.g. percentages, per capita data, data expressed in purchasing power standards).

The Statistical Office of the Republic of Serbia follows the rules described above.  Transactions on the economic territory of the Republic of Serbia are performed in the national currency Dinar (RSD). Nevertheless, the values of the total GDP and GDP per capita are shown in euros (EUR) and dollars (USD) as well.


05. Reference PeriodTop
05. Reference Period

The usual reference period to be used for presenting national accounts data is the calendar year for annual data and the quarter for quarterly data.

Two basic kinds of information are recorded: flows and stocks. Flows refer to actions and effects of events that take place within a given period of time (year or quarter), while stocks refer to positions at a point of time (usually the beginning or end of a year or quarter).


06. Institutional MandateTop
06.1. Institutional Mandate - legal acts and other agreements

The Official Statistics Law (Official Gazette of the RS, No. 104/09) specifies the legal framework for the production and dissemination of official statistics and also for the organization of the system of official statistics of the Republic of Serbia. Nevertheless, the Official Statistics Law, together with the five-year Statistical Programme and the annual Implementation Plan, provides the Statistical Office of the Republic of Serbia with a clear and broad legal mandate to collect and access the data needed for the execution of the Statistical Programme and the Implementation Plan.

National accounts are compiled in accordance with the European System of Accounts (ESA 2010) which was published in the Official Journal as Annex A of Regulation (EU) No 549/2013. The ESA 2010 transmission programme is covered in Annex B

The ESA 2010 has the form of a Regulation and it provides for:


06.2. Institutional Mandate - data sharing

National accounts data are key datasets used and published by many international organisations to improve data consistency and exploit synergies for data collection and validation. An initiative to improve data sharing for National Accounts was launched in 2016 by the Inter-Agency Group on Economic and Financial Statistics (comprising representatives of the Bank for International Settlements, the European Central Bank, Eurostat, the IMF, the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, the United Nations, and the World Bank)  under the G20 Data Gap Initiative.

The Statistical Office of the Republic of Serbia regularly transmits available national accounts data at SDMX format. 


07. Confidentiality Top
07.1. Confidentiality - policy

Pursuant to Article 46. of the Official Statistics Law (“Official Gazette of RS”, No 104/09), Articles 7 and 35 of the Law on Government Administration (“Official Gazette of RS ”, No 79/05 and 101/07) and Articles 9, 15, 16.  and 18. of the Law on Free Access to Information of Public Interest (“Official Gazette of RS”, No120/04, 54 /07 and 104/09), the Director of the Statistical Office of the Republic of Serbia thereby adopt the Rulebook on statistical data protection at the Statistical Office of the Republic of Serbia. The Rulebook lays down the measures to be implemented so as to protect data and information at the Statistical Office of the Republic of Serbia.

Regulation (EC) No 223/2009 on European statistics (recital 24 and Article 20(4)) of 11 March 2009 (OJ L 87, p. 164), stipulates the need to establish common principles and guidelines ensuring the confidentiality of data used for the production of European statistics and the access to those confidential data with due account for technical developments and the requirements of users in a democratic society. The European Statistics Code of Practice provides further conditions that have to be respected by statistical offices in regard to statistical confidentiality (Principle 5).


07.2. Confidentiality - data treatment

In a statistical sense, ‘confidential data’ means data which allow statistical units to be identified, either directly or indirectly, thereby disclosing individual information. To determine whether a statistical unit is identifiable, account shall be taken of all relevant means that might reasonably be used by a third party to identify the statistical unit. Although national accounts data are usually highly aggregated, there may be possible cases for detailed breakdowns of aggregates and/or small economies. In these cases measures should be taken in order not to disclose data of a separate statistical unit. Guidance on how to prevent disclosure can be found in the Handbook on Statistical Disclosure Control.

As defined in the Serbian Legal Acts mentioned in the section 7.1:

Secret, confidential as well as aggregated data shall be protected from unauthorized disclosure if individual information can be identified therefrom. Two copies of those data, defined in the processing program, shall be safeguarded on magnetic mediums, as well as in paper form as long as anticipated by the processing program, that is, by the list of safeguarding archives and records.

The protection of secret data and documents shall be done in accordance with the Law on Data Secrecy.

Confidential data from Article 3. of the Rulebook are considered official secret and cannot be published or communicated, that is, they cannot be part of aggregated data from which individual data can be identified. Individual data can be given only to the owner of those data.

The protection of the integrity and secrecy of confidential data shall comply with the method specified in the programme of data processing.

Only the employees of the Statistical Office of the Republic of Serbia authorized by the decision of the Director of the Statistical Office of the Republic of Serbia shall have access to confidential data from administrative sources.


08. Release policyTop
08.1. Release calendar

Good practice requires that new national accounts data and associated news releases are announced in a Release calendar that is published well in advance of the respective releases.

Data are published in line with Release calendar, updated annually.


08.2. Release calendar access

Release calendar is available at website (link to release calendar).


08.3. Release policy - user access

In line with the Community legal framework and the European Statistics Code of Practice (Principle 6 on impartiality and objectivity, Principle 13 on timeliness and punctuality and Principle 15 on accessibility and clarity), national accounts data that meet the quality standards, including relevant metadata, should be made available to users. Users should be informed when the data become available and how they can be accessed.

Official Statists Law (“Official Gazette of RS” no. 104 /09) gives framework for release policy as well as user access.


09. Frequency of disseminationTop
09. Frequency of dissemination

New quarterly national accounts data are published each quarter: 4 times per year. However, depending on circumstances and national practices, initially released quarterly national accounts data may be revised and disseminated again. Annual national accounts data are published at least once a year: when data for a new year are added. But, depending on country practices and revision policy, annual data can also be published more often, e.g. publication of a provisional estimate early in the calendar year and a revised one later in the calendar year.


10. Accessibility and clarityTop
10.1. Dissemination format - News release

The most important results of national accounts are issued in statistical releases. New key national accounts data may also be presented in press conferences or press briefings. The exact dates are pre-announced in release calendars (see section 8.2 above).

All regular or ad-hoc releases are available at website (link to releases).


10.2. Dissemination format - Publications

In addition to news releases, national accounts data may be disseminated in other publications, such as statistical papers, yearbooks, internal and external articles. Usually this concerns publications in which more in-depth analysis is carried out.

All publications (Statistical Yearbook, working papers, bulletins, studies and analyses) are available at website (link to publications).


10.3. Dissemination format - online database

In order to enable easy access to national accounts data, all validated national accounts data should be made available to users by publishing them in an online database.

The data are published under the heading “National accounts” in the statistical database (link to online database).


10.4. Dissemination format - microdata access

Not applicable.


10.5. Dissemination format - other

In addition to statistical releases and other publications (see sections 10.1 and 10.2), information on national accounts may be posted using social media.

The Statistical Office of the Republic of Serbia as the institution is present in social media, Twitter (link to Twitter) and YouTube (link to YouTube) and Instagram (link to Instagram).


10.6. Documentation on methodology

The general methodological framework for the compilation of national accounts in the EU is ESA 2010.

In addition, several handbooks have been developed to help compilers to produce national accounts data. Some of the most important methodological manuals are the Handbook on quarterly national accounts, Manual on regional accounts methods, Eurostat Manual of Supply, Use and Input-Output Tables, Manual on Government Deficit and Debt. In addition, guidance manuals on specific topics are available, e.g. compilation guide on land estimation, compilation guide on inventories, Manual on measuring Research and Development in ESA 2010.

The manuals above specifically apply to EU national accounts statistics. However, world-wide equivalents are often also available: SNA 2008, Quarterly National Accounts Manual, Handbook on Input-Output Table Compilation and Analysis, Government Finance Statistics Manual.

Methodological information related to annual and quarterly national accounts, gross domestic product at constant prices, gross fixed capital formation as well as satellite accounts are available at website (link to documentation on methodology). Some of the documents are still based on ESA 1995; they have been updated and consolidated into the document “GDP Methodology - sources and methods”.

Apart from the methodological information, the description of the national accounting system is provided in many publications of the Statistical Office of the Republic of Serbia and the online versions are available as free download:

Besides, there is also comprehensive and transparent description of the annual and quarterly national accounts data sources and methods used in calculating GDP/GNI of the country; i.e. GDP Methodology - sources and methods[1]  and Quarterly National Accounts Inventory[2]






10.7. Quality management - documentation

The importance of national accounts requires that documentation should be available on the procedures applied for quality management and quality assessment. Examples of such documentation are national accounts quality reports, quality studies and reports on revision analysis.

Quality reports for regional accounts (Regional household accounts quality report and regional GVA quality report) were prepared and provided to Eurostat within IPA 2011 project in 2014.


11. Quality managementTop
11.1. Quality assurance

Quality of national accounts data is assured by strict application of ESA 2010 concepts and by applying the guidelines of the ESS handbook for quality reports.

During the overall compilation process, national and regional accounts data undergo several kinds of quality checks, e.g. ex-ante (source statistics), ongoing (results), ex-post (methods used) and external checks (Eurostat and IMF).

The Statistical Office of the Republic of Serbia established “Quality policy” as the general framework based on which it defines the design and implement the system of quality management, and “Quality strategy” as the framework for the Statistical Office of the Republic of Serbia activities as regards the implementation of Quality management (QM). Additionally, plan of implementation of quality strategy is defined. The Statistical Office of the Republic of Serbia quality management system relies on the mission and vision of the Serbian official statistics, European Statistics Code of Practice – CoP, and the principles of Total Quality Management – TQM, which represent the common framework of the European Statistical System (ESS) quality standard. The model of Total Quality Management defines generally the areas of activity and criteria that must be taken into account in quality management. Accordingly, the Statistical Office of the Republic of Serbia has defined four areas for continuous quality improvement: (1) User orientation (2) Quality of statistical products and processes (3) Strengthening the cooperation with data providers and (4) Staff professional development and satisfaction.


11.2. Quality management - assessment

Due to their great importance for administrative purposes, national accounts are regularly made subject to international audits; for example by Eurostat, the International Monetary Fund and OECD.

Statistical Management Information System (SMIS) or compliance database is used for measuring the harmonization of statistics with EU statistical standards; especially the implementation of the methodological, as well as the statistical legislation requirements. In the latest assessment report (RS - 2020 Compliance monitoring report), Eurostat evaluated the Module: European system of accounts as medium compliant. Serbia is recommended to improve the compliance with ESA 2010, step by step, including the further development of suitable statistical sources. Furthermore, after the two screening meetings and the placing of the closing benchmark on National Accounts a check of Serbian NA against the pre-accession criteria will be carried out. Further projects support should be offered based on the findings of the IPA projects and the needs to be expressed by the country.


12. Relevance Top
12.1. User needs

National accounts data provide key information for economic policy monitoring and decision making, for forecasting, for administrative purposes, for informing the general public about economic developments (directly or indirectly via news agencies), and as input for economic research.

The national accounts are relevant as quantitative basis for everyone working with economics, ranging from the use of national accounts in the Ministry of Economy, the Ministry of Finance, the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Serbia, the National Bank of Serbia for planning, analysing, modelling and forecasting purposes, to their use by various public organisations and public interest in the structure and development of the economy. Besides, the results of national accounts are also important to the identified groups of users (general public, specialized journalists, etc.).


12.2. User satisfaction

The Statistical Office of the Republic of Serbia regularly conducts a User Satisfaction Survey, in order to obtain information on users’ needs, their satisfaction with the information and services, as well as to obtain information about the quality of data and services provided by the Statistical Office of the Republic of Serbia. 


12.3. Completeness

In most countries national accounts cover the domains national accounts main aggregates, government accounts, sector accounts, regional accounts and supply and use tables. However, the content of the data on these domains as well as the (details of the) various breakdowns (by region, sector, industry, product, etc.) may deviate per country, depending on national needs and available sources.

The ESA 2010 transmission programme, consisting of 22 tables across all national accounts domains (see Eurostat database) defines the minimum national accounts data set that must be available in all Member States of the EU.

Completeness of the Serbian national accounts data can be observed in the context of meeting Eurostat data requirements set in the 2010 ESA - Transmission programme of data. In February 2013, the Statistical Office of the Republic of Serbia started to submit national accounts data to Eurostat, in line with ESA 95. Starting from October 2014, the transmission of the national accounts tables is carried out as a regular activity envisaged by ESA 2010.  


13. Accuracy and reliabilityTop
13.1. Overall accuracy

The traditional measures of accuracy would be difficult to apply to the national accounts estimates, but can be indirectly accessed through evaluation of the reliability of the released analysis of the revisions of GDP and its components. Figures are revised quarterly or annually. These revisions are small and based on additional information received during the reference period. Such revision was conducted in 2020 for the period 2015-2018 due to the harmonization with the supply and use tables data. However, major revisions, like those from 2014, 2018 and 2019, are required because of the introduced new methodology or upgraded data sources.


13.2. Sampling error

Not relevant for these statistics.

13.3. Non-sampling error

Not relevant for these statistics.


14. Timeliness and punctualityTop
14.1. Timeliness

National accounts data should become available to users as timely as possible, taking into account the frequency of the data (annual or quarterly), the character of the data (info on the structure of an economy or on conjuncture developments) and an adequate balance between accuracy and timeliness.

The ESA 2010 transmission programme defines the required timeliness for all national accounts tables. Quarterly tables should become available between 2 and 3 months after the quarter-end. The annual tables have to be transmitted between 2 months (main aggregates) and 36 months (supply and use tables) after the end of the reference year.

  Release timetable


Publishing period


Quarterly gross domestic product at constant prices - flash estimate

t+30 days

Press release

Quarterly gross domestic product

t+60 days[1]

Statistical release

Annual gross domestic product - estimate

Last working day of a current year

Statistical release

Annual national accounts -  as sum of four quarters

t+60 days

Publishing data

Annual national accounts

t+9 months

Statistical releases

Sectoral accounts

t+12 months

Publishing data

Regional accounts - preliminary

t+10 months

Press release

Regional accounts

t+15 months

Working paper

Supply use and input-output tables

t+21 months

Publishing data


   t = reference period



[1] 1st Quarter – end of May; 2nd Quarter – end of August; 3rd Quarter – end of November; 4th Quarter – end of February of the subsequent year.


14.2. Punctuality

Good practice requires that the dates on which national accounts data become available are pre-announced and that the pre-announced publication dates are met.

National accounts data transmissions in the framework of the ESA 2010 transmission programme should be punctually delivered to Eurostat at the timeliness defined in the transmission programme (or before).

The release dates for the statistics of national accounts are indicated in the Release calendar, which is updated on yearly basis. The calendar is accessible to public before the beginning of a calendar year, referring to the following year and it provides the review of all statistical releases and publications with precisely stated title, referent period and date of publishing.

Deviations from the calendar are published and explained on the Statistical Office of the Republic of Serbia website. In case it is necessary to postpone the data publishing due to unpredicted occasions (e.g. technical reasons), the new release date, with the stated explanation, is to be provided in the scope of the calendar.  


15. Coherence and comparabilityTop
15.1. Comparability - geographical

The geographical comparability of national accounts in Member States of the EU is ensured by the application of common definitions of the European System of Accounts (ESA 2010). Worldwide geographical comparison is also possible as most non-European countries apply the SNA 2008 guidelines, and SNA 2008 is consistent with ESA 2010.

The ESA 2010 has been implemented from October 2014; therefrom the data transmission to Eurostat is compliant with the ESA 2010 transmission programme rules. 


15.2. Comparability - over time

As the data for all reference periods are compiled according to the requirements of the ESA 2010, national accounts data are fully comparable over time. Also, in the case of fundamental changes to methods or classifications, revisions of long time series are performed, usually going far back into the past.

Length of comparable time series


Time series[1]

Annual National Accounts

From 1995 onwards

Quarterly National Accounts

From 1st quarter of 1995 onwards

Sectoral accounts

From 2015 onwards

Regional accounts

From 2010 onwards

Supply and use tables


Input output tables

2010 and 2015

[1] Starting from 1999 the Statistical Office of the Republic of Serbia has not at disposal and may not provide available certain data relative to AP Kosovo and Metohia and therefore these data are not included in the coverage for the Republic of Serbia (total).

15.3. Coherence - cross domain

Within the system of national accounts there is full consistency between the domains: annual and quarterly national accounts, government accounts, sector accounts, financial accounts, regional accounts, and supply and use tables. However, in practice full consistency may not always be possible and temporary discrepancies might occur. They are usually the result of vintage differences.

Primary statistics like structural business statistics (SBS), short term statistics (STS) and labour force statistics (LFS) are widely used as input for national accounts. However, there is no full consistency between these statistical domains and national accounts. Main reasons are differences in concepts/definitions and in coverage. Balance of payments is also used as an important source for national accounts. The definitions and coverage of balance of payments, as defined in the BPM6 manual, are fully harmonised with those in ESA 2010. Therefore, balance of payments variables are in principle fully coherent with the corresponding national accounts variables.


15.4. Coherence - internal

See section 15.3 (Coherence - cross domain).


16. Cost and BurdenTop
16. Cost and Burden

Not available.


17. Data revisionTop
17.1. Data revision - policy

The national accounts data are subject to continuous routine revisions as new input data become available. They are called routine revisions and entail regular revisions of country data and of the European aggregates, which are derived from the former.

More rarely, exceptional revisions (called benchmark revisions) will result from major changes in data sources, classifications or methodology. For example, when changing from ESA95 to ESA 2010, a benchmark revision occurred at country level and at euro area/EU data level.

Two Task Forces developed proposals for a more harmonised approach for benchmark and routine revisions. The one under the auspices of the Directors of Macroeconomic Statistics (DMES) dealt with benchmark revision policy, the other under the auspices of the Committee on Monetary, Financial, and Balance of Payments Statistics (CMFB) on the European Harmonised Revision Policy dealing with routine revisions.

The Statistical Office of the Republic of Serbia general revision policy is adopted and published as an official document. Furthermore, on October 1st 2020 the Statistical Office of the Republic of Serbia presented for the first time National Accounts Revision Policy (link to National Accounts Revision Policy document).


17.2. Data revision - practice

While revisions should be seen as a process to progressively improve the quality of national accounts as e.g. better sources and/or methods become available, the availability of metadata on revisions is a key element for understanding national accounts data and revisions between subsequent releases.

Therefore, information on the main reasons for revisions and their nature (new source data available, new methods, etc.) as well as possibly quantitative and qualitative assessment on the average size of revisions and their direction based on historical data is required.

The QNA revision policy allows the revisions of Q1‐Q3 data (of the year t) until Q4 data are published (in February of the year t+1) to give the first annual estimates for the year t. These are current revisions. After the publication of the fourth quarter data, quarterly data are revised only due to the reconciliation with annual national accounts data. The first revision due to reconciliation with annual data is carried out with available annual accounts data, obtained as the sum of four quarters. The second revision is carried out when the preliminary annual accounts data become available and the third when the final annual data have been determined. In these cases, quarters of the current year and two previous years are revised. The exception to the general rule is seasonally adjusted data ‐ they are revised in the context of the whole time series.

The annual national accounts revisions policy is carried out due to the reconciliation with supply and use tables data (t+21) as well as when the need arises to introduce: methodological issues (changed concepts, definitions, classifications), changes of statistical methods, changes of data sources, upgraded coverage of reporting units and corrections of errors and corrections of original data and estimations.



18. Statistical processingTop
18.1. Source data

National and regional accounts compilation builds up on statistics that are primarily collected for other purposes (primary statistics).

It relies on a variety of data sources, including administrative data: business registers, accounting statements, tax data, budgetary reports, population censuses, statistical surveys of businesses and households, statements of supervising institutions and branch organisations, annual and quarterly reports, trade statistics on goods and services, balance of payments information etc.

There is no single survey source for national accounts. Sources vary from country to country and provide statistical information on a large set of economic, social, financial and environmental phenomena, which may not be strictly related to national accounts.

In case of the Statistical Office of the Republic of Serbia, the most of data sources used for GDP compilation from the production side are administrative, and from the expenditure side are administrative and statistical ones.


18.2. Frequency of data collection

National accounts are usually compiled on an annual or quarterly basis from other primary statistics. The frequency of data collection of primary statistics varies according to the nature of the data source. For example, business statistics are typically available on a monthly (and quarterly) basis. Some households' surveys are available on quarterly or annual frequency (sometimes even less frequent). Availability of administrative data varies from country to country. Population censuses are mostly collected every decade.


18.3. Data collection

The data collection is very country specific and also varies according to the nature of the data source, e.g. administrative data, tax and car registers, surveys, accounting statements.  Guidance can be found in the Handbook of Recommended Practices for Questionnaire Development and Testing Methods in the ESS.

National accounts department typically do not collect data themselves but receive them from other departments or institutions. National Accounts combine data from many sources. Techniques for collecting data are different as well as, the available sources of information, timeliness of published data and other factors.

Notwithstanding the legal basis described above (see section 06.1), the Statistical Office of the Republic of Serbia should sign a separate agreements and technical protocols with the relevant institutions (e.g. National Bank of Serbia, Ministry of Finance, Tax and Customs Administration, etc.). In order to establish an efficient statistical system in the field of national accounts, which will be harmonised with the relevant EU legislation, based on the European Statistics Code of Practice, the Statistical Office of the Republic of Serbia, the National Bank of Serbia and the Ministry of Finance concluded a Cooperation Agreement on 30 September 2019 in the area of ​​national accounts of the government sector and related statistics. In addition, the Tax Administration of the Republic of Serbia and the Statistical Office of the Republic of Serbia signed an agreement on cooperation, on February 22, 2017., in order to adapt to the new changes in the tax system, and to further the process of modernization of official statistics on the way to harmonization with the methodology and practice of the European Union in terms of greater use of administrative data for statistical purposes. In order to more precisely define the way of submitting data, as well as the procedures that would lead to the most accurate and high-quality data and their continuous improvement, the Statistical Office of the Republic of Serbia has signed cooperation agreements with: the Customs Administration (2004), the Serbian Business Registers Agency (2009; Annex to the Protocol in 2019), the Pension and Disability Insurance Fund of the Republic of Serbia (2008 / Annex to the Contract in 2015), the Central Register of Compulsory Social Insurance (2012), the Central Securities Depository and Clearing House (2019), the Bar Association of Serbia (2008) and other relevant institutions.


18.4. Data validation

Data validation refers to any activity aimed at verifying that the value of a data item comes from a given set of acceptable values. It is a key task performed in all statistical domains and particularly important for national accounts, which is a key dataset for economic analysis and policy decisions.

In order to increase overall data quality and workflow efficiency, the European Statistical System (ESS) is moving towards more harmonisation of validation activities including the definition of common standards, tools and support for implementation (see ESS validation website). National accounts are a pilot in this area. An ESA 2010 Task Force on validation was established in 2015 to agree and document validation rules in an ESA 2010 validation handbook and progressively implement them in a pre-validation service for national accounts data.

The Statistical Office of the Republic of Serbia compile GDP applying both the production and the expenditure approach. The two results are then balanced to obtain the official GDP and its aggregates to be published. Data validation is carried out in four steps corresponding to the main processes of the data processing when compiling the national accounts:

  1. Thorough data validation is carried out in primary statistics (see the relevant documentation of relevant statistical areas (branch statistics) for more information).
  2. Data validation when preparing data for the compilation of GDP by production and expenditure approaches. The national accountants receive and process data on detailed level which makes it possible to go back to the sources.
  3. The preliminary data validation is carried out when reconciling the production and the expenditure approach estimates into consistency at a higher aggregation level.
  4. The final data validation is carried out when reconciling the preliminary annual estimates with supply-use tables data.

In theory, production and expenditure approach should yield the same value of GDP. However, in practice this is almost impossible. Apart from the different calculation formulas, these two approaches are based on different data sources and their origin (administrative or statistical) and each results in different GDP estimates with its inherent advantages and disadvantages. The preliminary step in each GDP calculation is the process of mutual harmonization, i.e, balancing the two independent estimates of GDP calculated according to production and expenditure approach. Hence, the final step in the calculation of GDP is the harmonization of preliminary annual estimates (obtained by balancing the production and expenditure approach) with the supply-use tables data.

The balancing process is performed in accordance with ESA 2010 main recommendations and within the framework of available data sources and procedures. Balanced GDP data are available for the period 1995 onwards. Besides, there is a consistency among annual, quarterly, regional, sectoral national accounts data and supply and use tables as well as other parts of the national accounts data.



18.5. Data compilation

Data sources, methods and compilation techniques are country specific, but should be employed in such a way that the definitions and concepts in ESA 2010 are met. Many guidance documents on general and specific national accounts compilation issues are available. See for more details section 10.6.

The Serbian annual national accounts compile GDP independently, by both the production and the expenditure approach, and the income approach is derived from the production approach (still experimental data).

Likewise, quarterly national accounts compile GDP by the production and the expenditure approach as well as income approach (still experimental data). Quarterly GDP in Serbia is determined from the production components, due to the fact that quarterly data on changes in inventories are very limited and that the current practice is to calculate changes in inventories as a residual (subtracting the estimates of final consumption, gross fixed capital formation, acquisition less disposals of valuables and net exports from the production-based GDP estimate).

Annual national accounts estimates of GDP aggregates are compiled using mostly direct data sources, independently using the expenditure and production methods, with consistency between the two approaches being the major aim. Income approach is applied by using method that assumes estimation of income components indirectly, based on GDP by production approach. 

The main aggregates of the Serbian quarterly and annual national accounts are simultaneously compiled at current prices, at previous year's prices and as chain-linked volume measures (reference year 2015), and quarterly GDP also in seasonally adjusted form. For international comparisons, annual GDP is also recalculated into USD (since 1995) and EUR (since 1999). The recalculation of annual GDP into USD and EUR is based on the average annual exchange rate of the National Bank of Serbia.

Additionally, annual and quarterly national accounts data on employment at persons and in hours are regularly compiled.

Regional GDP is compiled using the NSTJ, at the NUTS level 2 (region) and NUTS level 3 (areas). Besides, data for "extra regio", i.e. extraterritorial unit of the Republic of Serbia (ESA 2010, §§ 13.11) is separately presented. The regionalization of gross value added (GVA) is based on the workplace principle, i.e. on using the economic data on local units of enterprises where the value added is actually created. Regional GVA data are released at the level of NACE activities in RSD millions. Nevertheless, regional GDP data are presented at current prices, growth rates, as well as in PPS (purchasing power standard) and the comparison of the Serbian regions with EU28 indicators.

In the Serbian national accounts, a full sequence of non-financial accounts is produced at the level of the total economy as well as for institutional sectors (S.11 non-financial corporations, S.12 financial corporations, S.13 general government, S.14 households and S.15 non-profit institutions serving households). This includes the Goods and services account (account 0) for the total economy, and another set of accounts compiled both for all institutional sectors (non-financial sector, financial sector, government sector, households sector, sector of NPISHs) as well as for the total economy. Existing accounts are: Production account, Generation of income account, Allocation of primary income account, Distribution of income account, Use of income account, Capital account. For the rest of the world, the Statistical Office of the Republic of Serbia produces three accounts: External account of goods and services, External account of primary incomes and current transfers and External capital account. Integration of economic accounts has been achieved.

Supply use tables are compiled for all datasets (contain particular tables) at current prices as well as at previous year's prices. Input-output tables are produced at current prices at five year dynamics


18.6. Adjustment

The objectives of seasonal adjustment are to identify and remove seasonal fluctuations and calendar effects which can mask short and long-term movements in a time series and impede a clear understanding of underlying phenomena. Seasonal adjustment is therefore a fundamental process in the interpretation of time series to inform policy making (ESS guidelines on seasonal adjustment, 2015 Edition, Annex, point 1).

For selected sub-annual national accounts data, such as notably the quarterly main aggregates, time series are usually not only published in their unadjusted form, but also with various types of adjustment (e.g. seasonal, calendar, trend-cycle).

According to the ESA transmission programme, quarterly data are to be provided in non-seasonally adjusted form, as well as in seasonally adjusted form (including calendar adjustments, where relevant) except for previous year’s prices.

For sector accounts, seasonal adjustment (including calendar adjustments, where relevant) is compulsory for a limited set of series.

19. CommentTop