Expanding Provision of Public Goods: Economic Data

03 November 2022

The Kenya National Bureau of Data (KNBS) provides economic data as a public service. KNBS economic data shares two traits with public goods: it is not exclusive and its consumption is not competitive. This analysis aims to highlight the significance of this public benefit by examining policy concerns related to Kenya's economic data, in particular the breadth, timeliness, depth, and specificity of data generated by Kenya trades agency. In this article, we will explore the expanding provision of public goods on economic data.

Kenya Economic Trade Data

Economic statistics are used to produce economic indicators. An economic indicator is a piece of data that analysts use to analyse existing or potential investment opportunities. It is often on the macroeconomic scale. The general health of an economy can also be determined using these indicators. As a result, economic data is crucial when making decisions at the home, business, and governmental levels. The main government organisation in Kenya responsible for gathering, processing, and disseminating statistics data is the KNBS. The Statistical Act No. 4 of 2006 (Revised 2019) serves as the legal foundation for the KNBS's authority. The KNBS is perhaps one of Kenya's Trade most reputable institutions, especially in terms of data creation and integrity, based on the IEA's nearly three decades of daily interaction Trade with Kenya.

Policy and Context Issues with Kenyan Economic Data

Specificity and depth of the data

There is an urgent need to develop more precise and detailed economic data that goes beyond aggregates and breaks down the indicators by particular geographic regions, even for data that has already been produced. Kenya's Quarterly Labour Market Surveys, which are published quarterly, are a good example of how economic indicators like employment and unemployment are aggregated and not geographically specific. Because Kenya's Trade labour market is varied and solutions should be developed from specific facts, using high-level aggregated data to build economic policy for the entire nation would greatly diminish its effectiveness.

Timeliness of data releases

For economic data to be most useful in decision-making, information must be gathered, compiled, analysed, abstracted, and published in a timely manner. For instance, corporations use accurate inflation data estimates to adjust wages at the start of respective fiscal years, which helps to prevent inflationary wage pressures.

Data Release and Resource Issues for KNBS on a Regular Basis

It is possible to generate economic data on time for maximum utility in personal, commercial, and governmental decision-making by expanding its scope, timeliness, and accessibility (Parliament, Judiciary, Executive branch and Constitutional Commissions). Slowing down the creation of this public good has the unintended effect of undercutting supervision initiatives, especially those spearheaded by non-state players, and jeopardising the integrity of the market.

The monetary policy committee of the Central Bank, for instance, holds regular meetings to evaluate economic performance and make decisions about monetary policy, including those pertaining to the Central Bank Rate. The committee could employ a variety of techniques, such as the Phillips Curve, in the examination of the economic outlook and the formulation of monetary policy at the central bank to carry out its duties under Article 231(2), which would require Kenya's Trade data.


A review of data on the KNBS website reveals that the National Statistical Office has been slow to release certain types of economic data, such as quarterly GDP and quarterly balance of payments reports, while timely releasing other types of data, such as data on the CPI and inflation rates, leading economic indicators, the national census, various surveys, and so on.

The two most significant publications produced by the KNBS are the Economic Survey and Statistical Abstract. The performance of the release of the economic survey has been inconsistent during the past five years. Prior to the budget, an economic survey has traditionally been released, but over the past seven years, this has not happened. Similar fate befell the statistical abstract, which in the previous three years was roughly five months late. If you need any advice on Kenya exports and imports, Kenya's Trade or Kenya import data. They may guarantee the delivery of precise and genuine data reports and allow traders to download cost-free Trade with Kenya reports.

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