Press Release: IMF Executive Board Approves Amendment to General Data Dissemination System Designed to Enhance Statistical Reporting Related to the Millennium Development Goals

November 6, 2003

The Executive Board of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) approved today an amendment to the General Data Dissemination System (GDDS) that is designed to promote the availability of statistical data related to the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).

The amendment gives explicit recognition within the GDDS to the MDGs and the development of appropriate statistical monitoring systems by stipulating as follows: (i) the guidance on the coverage, periodicity, and timeliness for the compilation and dissemination of socio-demographic data will be expanded to recognize explicitly the related MDGs indicators; and (ii) the guidance on the coverage, periodicity, and timeliness for the compilation and dissemination of labor market indicators will be included as encouraged extensions of more disaggregation.

In September 2000 at the United Nations' Millennium summit, world leaders agreed to a set of time bound and measurable goals for combating poverty, hunger, disease, illiteracy, environmental degradation, and discrimination against women. The subsequent world forums held under the auspices of the UN completed and specified eight goals, 18 concrete goals and 48 indicators for their global implementation. Placed at the heart of the global agenda, they are called the Millennium Development Goals. Some examples of MDGs indicators are: infant mortality rate, net enrollment ratio in primary education, and the proportion of infants immunized against measles.

Approval of the MDGs amendment by the Executive Board highlights the role of the GDDS as a catalyst to mobilize and coordinate technical assistance by the IMF, the World Bank, and donors. Directors recognized the important role that the GDDS plays in promoting data for effective poverty reduction strategies, and they endorsed further refinements in the GDDS that would support the compilation of MDGs indicators.

Mrs. Carol Carson, Director of the Statistics Department, noted that "the demand for good quality data to monitor economic and social progress within countries and to provide the basis for effective poverty reduction has increased substantially in recent years. The GDDS helps address this need."

The GDDS was established in 1997 as a framework for countries to improve their statistical systems. The GDDS fosters the application of sound methodological principles, the adoption of rigorous compilation practices, and the observance of procedures that ensure professionalism and objectivity. Countries that participate in the GDDS provide metadata describing their data dissemination practices and detailed plans for improvement for posting on the Dissemination Standards Bulletin Board (DSBB).


Public Affairs    Media Relations
E-mail: E-mail:
Fax: 202-623-6278 Phone: 202-623-7100