services trade by enterprise characteristics (STEC)

Why do we need Services Trade by Enterprise Characteristics (STEC) statistics?Experimental statistics logo

The statistics on Services Trade by Enterprise Characteristics (STEC) provide detailed and timely information on the types of enterprises engaged in international services trade. STEC presents services trade statistics broken down by enterprise size class, enterprise ownership and type of economic activity, and allows the calculation of the exports intensity of enterprises engaged in services trade. Furthermore, STEC statistics show how enterprises in different industries supply services and how this relates to their primary activity.

read moreLess

The STEC data contribute to the larger statistical agenda on measuring economic globalisation and Global Value Chains (GVCs) and allow for better informed and tailored trade policies. The high quality STEC statistics help improving the allocation of services exports and imports by industry in the development of the framework of Input-Output tables and national Supply and Use tables.

Why are the STEC statistics experimental?

Given that 15 EU Member States have participated in the pilot studies and voluntary data collections, it is reasonable to consider that STEC statistics have not yet reached full maturity in terms of harmonisation, coverage and methodology. When data for all or most EU countries become available, the developed methodology will be applicable on a European scale. Thus, STEC data shall be considered experimental until:

  • the coverage and completeness of the data are improved and all EU Member States are covered;
  • the methods are widely agreed among all the EU Member States;
  • the STEC tables are produced regularly.

How are the STEC data produced?

STEC data are produced by linking international trade in services micro-data with the business register at enterprise level. The resulting dataset splits the traders’ population into small, medium and large enterprises; domestic and foreign-owned enterprises; and by economic activity. The breakdown by trading partner location is currently limited to Intra-EU, Extra-EU and World. STEC provides additional information on services trade using already existing data sources at a moderate cost for compilers and at no extra burden on the respondents.

read moreLess

The Eurostat-OECD Compilers Guide for Statistics on Services Trade by Enterprise Characteristics provides recommendations for the methodology on the compilation of STEC statistics.

Access the statistics


To help Eurostat improve these experimental statistics, users and researchers are kindly invited to give us their feedback:

  • How useful do you consider the STEC data and the published analysis?
  • What do you need the STEC data for and how did you get access to this kind of information in the past?
  • Would you have any comments or suggestions for improving the STEC methodology?
  • What other data breakdowns would you like to see?
  • What sort of analysis based on STEC tables would bring added value in your field?