Malta Adheres to the International Monetary Fund’s Special Data Dissemination Standard Plus

July 31, 2023

Washington, DC – Malta has adhered to the IMF’s Special Data Dissemination Standard (SDDS) Plus, the highest tier of the IMF’s Data Standards Initiatives . It is the 31 st country to achieve this milestone in data transparency.

By adhering to the SDDS Plus, Malta complies with the most rigorous standards for disseminating essential macroeconomic and financial data about the state of the economy and its financial linkages as established in the IMF Data Standards Initiatives. It is a strong testament to the country’s commitment to data transparency vis-à-vis the public, markets, and the international community., Data transparency fosters efficiency in markets, leads to better policies and enhances accountability in policymaking by allowing a richer and well-informed debate and analysis of the country’s economic policy issues.

With the upgrade from SDDS to SDDS Plus, Malta is now committed to disseminating new data categories more regularly. These categories include general government gross debt, financial soundness indicators, sectoral balance sheets, and debt securities, among others. In addition, Malta will publish more granular information on several data categories that it currently provides under the SDDS. Users can find a comprehensive and up-to-date description of all disseminated data on Malta’s National Summary Data Page (NSDP). This metadata provides a standardized framework to assess data quality and facilitates cross-country comparability. All data series are also available in a machine-readable format.

Bert Kroese, Chief Statistician and Data Officer, and Director of the IMF’s Statistics Department, welcomed Malta’s adherence to the SDDS-Plus and noted that “Malta’s adherence not only provides a richer canvas for macroeconomic and financial sector analyses, but it could also help bolster Malta’s standing in international capital markets.”

The IMF Data Standards Initiatives were established in the mid-1990s to enhance member countries’ data transparency as a global public good and promote the development of sound statistical systems. The need for data dissemination standards was highlighted by the financial crises of the mid and late 1990s when information deficiencies were seen to play a role. The significant progress made by a number of SDDS countries to adhere to the SDDS Plus since 2015 was acknowledged by the IMF Executive Board in its latest review of the Data Standards Initiatives, encouraging more countries to make the transition.

In addition to the SDDS Plus, the Data Standards Initiatives include the SDDS and the Enhanced General Data Dissemination System (e-GDDS). Detailed information on the Data Standards Initiatives can be found on the IMF’s Dissemination Standards Bulletin Board. Malta’s SDDS Plus data, including an advance release calendar are also accessible through the IMF’s Dissemination Standards Bulletin Board .

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