Washington – The World Bank Board of Directors approved a US$80 million loan to improve Ecuador’s national statistical capacity through the production and dissemination of updated, reliable economic and sociodemographic statistics that are accessible to the public.
The project, which will be implemented by the National Statistics and Census Institute (INEC), will modernize the official sociodemographic statistics system. Activities include the design and implementation of the Eighth Population Census, the Seventh Housing Census and the First Community Census, as well as the updating of labor statistics, calculation of the basic family basket, the consumer price index and monetary poverty lines, among other measurements.
“This loan contributes to a medium- and long-term strategic vision to strengthen the INEC, generate technical capacities and update basic statistics that constitute the starting point for development planning in Ecuador over the next 10 years. As abundant information is now generated in real time, investing in the national statistics system is strategic to make realities visible, identify needs, establish goals and monitor progress. The World Bank’s technical and financial support will allow us to provide the country with relevant, reliable and quality statistics,” said INEC Executive Director Roberto Castillo.
The results of the statistical operations supported through this loan will be crucial for government efforts to develop poverty maps and identify areas in the country that require updating of the social registry. This will improve social program targeting and service access for the most vulnerable population. To this end, the project will strengthen three fundamental information sources: censuses, surveys and administrative records.
Optimizing the use of administrative records and geostatistics is essential for modernizing monitoring and evaluation systems of the different government programs. Improvements in INEC capacity and innovation in the production of statistics will complement production of this key statistic. The project will focus on collecting data to increase the number of gender and climate change indicators.
“National statistics are essential for information and timely decision-making to design and implement projects and programs to improve the quality of life of citizens” said the World Bank Director for Bolivia, Chile, Ecuador and Peru, Marianne Fay. “This project will contribute to two particularly relevant issues for equitable and sustainable development: the first is to reduce existing gender data gaps and increase the quality of these data; the second is to increase the availability of data on poverty, inequality and household vulnerability to shocks, including climate change,” she said.
The approved project has four components. The first component seeks to improve demographic information through the new Population and Housing Census. The second will focus on strengthening statistical production based on the Income and Expenditure surveys, the Labor Force Survey and the Comprehensive Agricultural Survey. The third will help strengthen statistical production based on administrative records. Finally, the fourth component includes project management, monitoring and evaluation and strengthening of INEC management capacity.
The project financing is a flexible loan with a variable spread and a maturity period of 17 years, including a 5-year grace period.