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ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org UN Comtrade United Nations Commodity.

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Presentation on theme: "ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org UN Comtrade United Nations Commodity."— Presentation transcript:

1 ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org UN Comtrade United Nations Commodity Trade Statistics Database Markie Muryawan Statistician Trade Statistics Branch United Nations Statistics Division Tel:

2 ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org Importance of trade data (1)

3 ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org China is now the biggest ICT Goods Exporter Importance of trade data (2)

4 ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org What is UN Comtrade? International Merchandise Trade Statistics Database Maintained by UN Statistics Division / Trade Statistics Branch Inside UN Comtrade database: –Imports, Exports, Re-exports, Re-imports –Commodity by Trading Partner –Annual data (since 1962) –Value in US dollars –Net weight and secondary quantities –Over 150 reporters per year (>95% of the World Trade) Received 2005 prestigious UN 21 Awards in the category of Knowledge Management

5 ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org Key elements Dimension –Classifications and Commodity Codes Harmonized System (HS) SITC BEC –Reporter country –Partner country –Trade Flow –Year Measure / indicator –Net weight –Supplementary quantity unit –value

6 ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org UN Comtrade is the largest database of annual commodity trade statistics On average, more than 2 billion records downloaded every month Newly published data synchronized with other international organizations such as World Bank, ECLAC, OECD, ITC, etc via web service Main trade data source Free Site License trial subscription (please contact

7 ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org Data collection & processing

8 ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org Joint UN/OECD Data Collection and Processing System (Copr A ) –Joint collection = Reduced response burden –Joint standards = Increased Quality –Joint processing = Full harmonization of data Cooperation with OECD

9 ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org Collection Official annual request sent in February to national institution responsible for dissemination of trade statistics: –Almost all data come from custom declarations, with an addition of postal services, oil ministry, electricity, sales/lease of aircraft/ship, etc –About 80% data sent from National Statistical Offices and 20% sent from statistics unit in Custom Administration –Most of reporters report data in more than 6 digit HS Most countries report in electronic format (via CD, FTP or attachment) by June (for major countries), large chunk of data reported between March and June Since 2001, UN and OECD decided to collect data jointly: OECD collects OECD countries and shares them with UN. This cooperation aims to eliminate redundancy in data collection. –In the beginning 2006, OECD and UN released joint data processing system, named Copr A. Reported data format must be refitted into standard format (see Key Element slide). –This pre-processing task consumes a lot of time compare to processing itself (see next slide) –SDMX format is intended to reduce pre-processing time and minimize error in transforming data format

10 ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org Processing – UN/OECD Copr A Joint UN/OECD Processing System, Copr A (2006) Main Processing Flows: –Data format standardization –Convert into US$ –Codes Normalization –Data Aggregation –Quantity Estimation –Data Checking –Data Conversion –Publish to UN Comtrade During processing, data is duplicated and stored –original, tariff line, complete and final data for publication Processing flows controlled by system

11 ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org Challenges in processing Original format is non-text or non- database –Such as PDF or printed publication How to handle confidential/higher level data Estimating and Checking quantities –Missing quantity units / net weight –Outliers of unit value –Different quantity units with WCO Non HS or high level HS (< 6 digit) reported Incomplete partners/commodities breakdown To make sure data is correct and make sense Unit Value rejected due to standard unit value Lead to Delay in releasing data and/or lower data quality

12 ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org Countries & Areas (1) General rule –Based on country definition of custom territories (legality) –Copr A processing system transforms detailed partner into UN Comtrade countries & areas For an example: US data includes US Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico, thus, any data referring US VI and PR as partners will be lumped together with US China Hong Kong SAR (344), China Macao SAR (446) and China (156) are two separate areas in UN Comtrade. They also declares trade to each others. Before 1981 USA was 841 (incl. PR) Since 1981 USA is 842 (incl. PR and USVI)

13 ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org Countries & Areas (2) Areas –France ( France, French Guiana, Guadeloupe, Martinique, Monaco, Réunion ) –Italy ( Holy See, Italy, San Marino ) –Norway ( Norway, Svalbard and Jan Mayen Islands ) –USA ( Puerto Rico, United States, US Virgin Isds ) –Switzerland ( Liechtenstein, Switzerland ) –Serbia and Montenegro ( Kosovo, Montenegro, Serbia ) Any major splits or joints, new country code may be assigned –For an example: separate codes for Kosovo, Montenegro, Serbia

14 ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org Data availability

15 ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org General Data Availability There are 5221 country-period datasets from 1962-now, 1.1 billion records, and 224 countries/areas as reporters (as of Jan 2007) Data availability is accessible via “Data Availability menu”, RSS and web services ( ) Tariff Line data (detailed national level commodity codes) is not available for public use except in a project between international organizations and universities

16 ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org Not yet available reporters Every user must take into account “not yet available reporters” –Will have impact on calculation of country groups –Not-yet-available reporters are shown in the front page 54% of countries represent 96% of world trade ( based on mbs country tables ) Normally, by June, almost all major countries have reported their data It is updated as soon as data comes in

17 ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org HS2007 & SITC Rev.4

18 ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org HS 2007 & SITC Rev.4 Addition of HS2007 will increase UN Comtrade commodity classifications from 7 to 9 User must understand impact of break in time series HS-2007 will be the starting point of the classification conversion linking to earlier HS and SITC, and to CPC, ISIC, and BEC Correlation between SITC Rev.4 and HS 2007 is available on UN Comtrade web sites Time Series Continuation –HS-2007 appearing code –HS-2002 disappearing codes and – = Chicken < 2 Kg – = Chicken > 2 Kg – = –Which code to choose for Time Series continuation in HS-2002 as of 2007 ?

19 ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org UN Comtrade Portal

20 ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org UN Comtrade Portal Page comtrade.un.org

21 ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org UN Comtrade Sites Database –Contains the largest trade statistics database Publication –Online version of International Trade Yearbook Web Services –Facilitate automated large data transfer Knowledge base –Guidelines, User Manuals, Reference Tables, Metadata, FAQ, Methodology, How-To, etc. Any knowledge related to trade statistics Community Forum –Peer-to-peer support. Discuss anything from incorrect quantities to SDMX. Expert Forum –Restricted membership, by invitation only. To discuss various issues regarding IMTS and supporting tools.

22 ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org Data Extraction Do-it-your-self extraction –Comtrade Explorer (text search) –Shortcut Query –Express Selection –Basic Selection –Via data availability –Via web services Download up to 20 million records per query via batch submission Special data extraction is not offered anymore Selecting commodity classification is crucial for historical time series

23 ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org Express Selection Auto convert from text to code More features than Basic Selection Expert User EXAMPLE Text sensitive search of commodities and countries Possibility to execute data requests off-line

24 ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org Comtrade Explorer “Google like” search Data results in table and graph Modification in Basic or Express Selection For data mining and overviews EXAMPLE Data availability of search result shown in Tag Cloud

25 ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org EXAMPLE Germany = main exporter of cars over the last 4 years Summary of data request View Map

26 ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org Map shows World Exports of motor vehicles : Germany and Japan are leaders

27 ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org Data Availability Interactive In Graph Reporters Commodities Years RSSBy Date of Loading RSS

28 ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org Data Availability by Reporter Click to get all data Drill down possibility Modify with Express Selection EXAMPLE Commodity Classification Iceland = Reporting Country Years available

29 ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org Data Availability by Year Overview per year and classification Click to get all data Drill down possibility Modify with Express Selection EXAMPLE All the Reporters available for Year = 2005 Classification = HS- 2002

30 ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org Data Download Direct Download –Max. 150,000 records to CSV output file –Instant extraction. Uncompressed file. Batch Download –Max. 20,000,000 records to CSV output file –Background extraction. Compressed file –Notification of completion via . Output format can be customized For Subscribers, not for Guest User

31 ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org Personalization Favorites Saved Queries FrontPage Download Format Automated Data Extraction alerts For Subscribers, not for Guest User

32 ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org Country Groups (as reporter or partner) –Such as EU25, ASEAN –During data extraction, it is considered as one country Commodity Groups Commodities –Such as ICT products, Fuel, etc –During data extraction, it is considered as one commodity Reporters Partners Years Favorites For Subscribers, not for Guest User

33 ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org Metadata & Reference Commodity List –HS, SITC, Data Availability and Snapshot Countries List –Data Availability, Snapshot, National Practices and ITC Country Profile Glossary –Also refer to Knowledge Base which contains all detailed terminology used in UN Comtrade Suggested Articles –Link to knowledge base with page sensitive articles

34 ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org Summary

35 ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org Pricing Policy for libraries Not for Profit Rate is 25% of Commercial Rate Additional discounts for libraries from certain countries Extra discount for UN Depository Libraries or library in the consortiums Best deal for library: Site Licence (including 5 individual users) Please contact for further

36 ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org Future work Methodology –- Supplement to the Compilers Manual Part I: Questionnaire on National Compilation and Reporting Practices Part II: Special topics –Singling out areas of increasing importance (Export Processing Zones/ Customs unions/ Affiliated trade/ Business Surveys) –Database on National Compilation and Reporting Practices –New trade statistics yearbook, additional online publication –Writing IMTS, Rev.3 (2010) UN Comtrade –Adding World and Region Totals –On going interface improvement –Improvement on web services (SDMX version 2.0) –Adding classification in different languages –Better revision control

37 ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org Summary Over 1 billion annual merchandise trade data, consists of detailed (6 digit) commodity with more than 209 countries & areas Coverage of reporting countries not available anywhere else Data extraction and Data mining Personalization of your requirements From 1962 until now, perfect for studying historical series Site License: institute-wide access and unlimited download UN Comtrade portal provides complete sets of tools: data extraction, comprehensive help and support and collaboration tools. Single point of contact:

38 ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org Thank you for your attention Please visit UN Comtrade at booth 1337

39 ALA BRASS Publishers’ Open Forum, January 2007 United Nations Statistics Divisionhttp://comtrade.un.org UN Comtrade Sites booth 1337) Database –Contains the largest trade statistics database Publication –Online version of International Trade Yearbook Web Services –Facilitate automated large data transfer Knowledge base –Guidelines, User Manuals, Reference Tables, Metadata, FAQ, Methodology, How-To, etc. Any knowledge related to trade statistics Community Forum –Peer-to-peer support. Discuss anything from incorrect quantities to SDMX. Expert Forum –Restricted membership, by invitation only. To discuss various issues regarding IMTS and supporting tools.


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