ISLAMABAD, Pakistan: After taking Oath of Office, the Federal Minister for Finance and Revenue Shaukat Tarin held an introductory meeting with the Secretary Planning, Development & Special Initiatives/Chief Statistician to evaluate the current techniques of data collection and analysis used by the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS) in Islamabad on Monday.
The Chief Statistician gave a detailed briefing to the new Finance Minister on evidence-based data collection techniques followed by the Bureau in compiling figures particularly for Consumer Price Index (CPI) and Sensitive Price Index (SPI).
The Minister appreciated the technology-based data gathering techniques followed by the Bureau after doing away with the paper-based approach and directed them to follow such methods that could further assist in making the data more objective, targeted, and authentic for the purpose of comparison and analysis.
The Chief Statistician also apprised the Minister of the changes they are about to introduce in the system to make it more comprehensive.
The Finance Minister said that addressing the root cause of inflation with devising a new hierarchy of administrative control will provide the most needed relief to the masses.
The Minister assigned the PBS to adopt a practice of regularly comparing the difference in wholesale and retail prices of essential food items in different districts across the Country. The PBS will highlight the difference in prices in different provinces as well.
Shaukat Tarin said that the data if available on a real-time basis on the PBS dashboard will help in maintaining the strategic reserves of the essential commodities across the Country.
The meeting of the National Price Monitoring Committee is expected to take place within a week’s time and PBS will share its data analysis report in the upcoming meeting of the National Price Monitoring Committee (NPMC).
The meeting was attended by the Prime Minister’s Special Assistant on Revenue Dr. Waqar Masood, the Member PBS Muhammad Sarwar Gondal, the Economic Adviser Dr. Imtiaz Ahmad, and senior officials of the Finance Division.