At the heart of the ESS is the European Statistical System Committee (ESSC), which was established by Regulation (EC) No 223/2009 of the European Parliament and Council of 11 March 2009 on European statistics.
The task of the Committee is to "provide professional guidance to the ESS for developing, producing and disseminating European statistics" (article 7 of the Regulation).
In practice, this means that the Commission shall consult the ESS Committee in regard to:
- The measures which the Commission intends to take for the development, production and dissemination of European statistics, their justification on a cost-effectiveness basis, the means and timetables for achieving them, the reporting burden on survey respondents;
- proposed developments and priorities in the European Statistical Programme;
- the annual work programme for the following year;
- initiatives to bring into practice the reprioritization and reduction of the response burden;
- issues concerning statistical confidentiality;
- the further development (revision or update) of the Code of Practice;
- any other question, in particular issues of methodology, arising from the establishment or implementation of statistical programmes.
The ESSC is chaired by the Commission (Eurostat) and composed of the representatives of Member States' National Statistical Institutes. EEA and EFTA countries' National Statistical Institutes participate as observers. Observers from ECB, OECD, etc. may also participate in the meetings of the ESSC.