In the frame of the MEETS programme, two ESSnets concluded to the need of changing the current definition of the statistical unit enterprise (Council Regulation (EEC ) No 636/93), on which the main part of business statistics in the EU is based.
The ESSnet on consistency proposed the following definition:
"A statistical unit enterprise is an organizational market oriented unit which benefits from sufficient degree of autonomy in decision-making. An enterprise carries out one or more activities at one or more locations. Meaningful data for statistics can be provided for this unit.
The enterprise can correspond to a single legal unit (not controlled by any other legal entity), an enterprise group as a set of legal units under common control, or an autonomous part of an enterprise group."
Moreover, the ESSnet on profiling large and complex multinational enterprise groups proposed a method to delineate the enterprises in the frame of large and complex groups, when they cannot be considered as a single enterprise.
In 2013 a contractor performed analyses on some aspects of the definition order to assess the feasibility of the implementation of this new definition.
Lot 1: Definition of a model to produce business statistics based on new statistical units in case of a whole enterprise group is considered as one enterprise.
Lot 2: Analysis of the impact of the changes in the definition of the statistical unit enterprise on SBS .
The results can be found here.