“This first mission of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) in Bulgaria was very successful and laid a very good foundation for future cooperation between Bulgaria and our organisation”, said Ms Asa Johansson, Deputy Director of the Statistics and Data Directorate at the Organsation for Economic Cooperation and Development. Within three days the experts of the international organisation did a review of the activities of the National Statistical System and met with experts from the National Statistical Institute (NSI), Bulgarian National Bank and the Ministry of Agriculture. This is the first mission to Bulgaria in the process of accepting Bulgaria as a member of the OECD.
“Our first impressions are that the Bulgarian statistics is in a very good condition. We are very impressed by the timeliness and quality of data produced and by the innovative methods of distribution of the information”, pointed Ms Johansson at the final meeting with the management of NSI. The meeting was also attended by Mrs. Kamelia Dimitrova from the Foreign Economic Relations and Development Cooperation Directorate at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Mrs. Nina Dimitrova from the Statistics Directorate at the BNB.
Mr. Julien Dupont, Accession Coordinator at the OECD, presented an action plan on which Bulgaria and the OECD will work in the next three years. According to the document, our country must provide by the end of May 2023 detailed information on the activities of NSI, data on the business register and the census in 2021. The action plan envisages NSI and BNB to develop welfare indicators. "The exchange of data between the two institutions is at an excellent level, but we are going to develop a new Memorandum of Understanding according to the action plan for the accession of our country," said Mrs. Dimitrova from the BNB. NSI will provide information on the introduced measures for the protection of personal data, the protection of statistical confidentiality and statistical literacy.
The OECD experts will analyze the information received during the mission, and the next step is the preparation of a preliminary report, which Bulgaria will receive. In the first half of 2024, representatives of the OECD and the member states will conduct a peer review of our country.
"I am pleased to learn that this mission, which is the first for Bulgaria, was fruitful for both countries. Our country's accession to the OECD, a treasure trove of best policies and practices, is an opportunity for us to improve our laws and policies to be prepared for all challenges. The preparation for the accession will be a catalyst for fundamental reforms, including the fight against corruption and the effectiveness of the justice system", summarized Ms. Kamelia Dimitrova from the MFA. According to her, membership in the OECD will be an important signal to foreign investors and is the next step in building a modern, sustainable and prosperous society.
The NSI President Assoc. Prof. Atanas Atanasov, PhD thanked Ms Johansson and Mr. Dupont for the good cooperation and pointed that Bulgaria's membership in the OECD is one of the main goals of our country.
The organisation and coordination of the process of accepting Bulgaria as a member of the OECD is regulated by Decree of the Council of Ministers No. 242 of August 11, 2022. NSI was designated as a leading institution under legal instrument OECD/LEGAL/0417 - Recommendation of the Council for Good Statistical Practices.
The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development is an international organisation with 38 of the world's developed countries as members. The OECD is a forum of representative democracy and market economy that enables comparison between countries in terms of political and economic experience, identification of good practices, coordination of policies, etc. The OECD also conducts one of the most authoritative and large-scale international studies on literacy, the Program for International Student Assessment - PISA, in which Bulgaria also participates.