Implementation of trial exchange of micro-data on intra-EU trade between Member States

Coordinator: Mushtaq Hussain
European Commission

The ESSnet “Preparation for exchange of micro-data on Intra-EU trade between Member States" (duration Oct 2013 – Oct 2014) aimed at supporting the NSIs and national authorities compiling Intrastat data in finding agreements concerning a number of practical statistical aspects. Which are common to all participants (e.g. technical specifications for the data transmission, data quality, timeliness, confidentiality, etc.). These agreements were required to be achieved in order to prepare for conducting the trial exchange of micro-data on intra-EU trade in a coordinated way and to test the future IT system for micro-data exchange.

The results and analyses of the ESSnet “SIMSTAT 1: Preparation for exchange of micro-data on Intra-EU trade between Member States" are the starting point for the actions of this ESSnet . The overall objective of this ESSnet is to implement the findings and agreements resulting from the previous ESSnet , in particular, to test the technical functioning of IT systems, CCN gateways and network, carry out the trial exchange of micro-data during the period Q2-Q3 2015 following agreed guidelines and timetable, analyse the exchanged data in accordance with pre-defined procedure and assess both the performance of the system and the usability of exchanged micro-data.

More specifically, the action aims to:

1. To establish the network of Member States participating in the pilot micro-data exchange:

  • verify that all participants are technically ready to participate in the test,
  • make all organisational and reporting arrangements,
  • sign data confidentiality agreements.

2. Testing of functioning and the interoperability of the IT infrastructure and tools:

  • functional and integrity testing (uploading, downloading, validation, splitting, conversion of files) both on Member States’ and Eurostat’s sites,
  • loading and volume testing,
  • network traffic testing,
  • data security testing,
  • scalability and stress testing.

3. Pilot micro-data exchange with emphasis on:

  • timeliness and punctuality,
  • completeness of the exchanged micro-data,
  • accuracy (coverage, data validation, corrections & revisions, control procedures).

4. Analysis and documenting of the trial results:

  • the performance of the new IT infrastructure (common system, adapted national systems, network),
  • comparability of arrivals data - arrivals which are collected from the PSIs and arrivals which are received from other Member States according to the guidelines developed by the previous ESSnet .
  • the quality of arrivals statistics with the use of the micro-data exchange.