Overview Overview

Eurostat is the statistical office of the European Union situated in Luxembourg. Its mission is to provide high quality statistics for Europe. While fulfilling its mission, Eurostat promotes the following values: respect and trust, fostering excellence, promoting innovation, service orientation, professional independence.

Providing the European Union with statistics at European level that enable comparisons between countries and regions is a key task. Democratic societies do not function properly without a solid basis of reliable and objective statistics. On one hand, decision-makers at EU level, in Member States, in local government and in business need statistics to make those decisions. On the other hand, the public and media need statistics for an accurate picture of contemporary society and to evaluate the performance of politicians and others. Of course, national statistics are still important for national purposes in Member States whereas EU statistics are essential for decisions and evaluation at European level.

Statistics can answer many questions. Is society heading in the direction promised by politicians? Is unemployment up or down? Are there more CO2 emissions compared to ten years ago? How many women go to work? How is your country's economy performing compared to other EU Member States?

International statistics are a way of getting to know your neighbours in Member States and countries outside the EU. They are an important, objective and down-to-earth way of measuring how we all live.

Changing role of Eurostat

Eurostat was established in 1953 to meet the requirements of the Coal and Steel Community. Over the years its task has broadened and when the European Community was founded in 1958 it became a Directorate-General (DG) of the European Commission. Today, Eurostat is part of the portfolio of Marianne Thyssen, the Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs, Skills and Labour mobility. Eurostat's key role is to supply statistics to other DGs and supply the Commission and other European Institutions with data so they can define, implement and analyse Community policies.

The result: Eurostat offers a whole range of important and interesting data that governments, businesses, the education sector, journalists and the public can use for their work and daily life.

With the development of Community policies, Eurostat's role has changed. Today, collecting data for EMU and developing statistical systems in candidate countries for EU membership are more important than ten years ago.