The Statistics and Registration Service Act 2007 (the 2007 Act) defines official statistics as all statistics produced by:
- central UK Government departments and agencies, including the Office for National Statistics,
- the devolved administrations in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales,
- other Crown bodies.
The 2007 Act also allows Ministers to specify, in secondary legislation, non-Crown Bodies that produce official statistics.
The term official statistics covers several categories of statistics produced by public bodies, which are:
- National Statistics – statistics that are officially recognised as compliant with the Code of Practice for Official Statistics,
- statistics produced by non-Crown Bodies (that can be National Statistics),
- statistics that are not National Statistics produced by all other bodies.
National Statistics are a category of official statistics which have been officially recognised as compliant with the Code of Practice for Official Statistics by the UK Statistics Authority.
There are three types of National Statistics:
- legacy National Statistics – statistics which were designated as National Statistics before April 2008, that are still classed as National Statistics, but have not been formally re-assessed by the UK Statistics Authority,
- re-assessed National Statistics – any statistics which are still classed as a National Statistic after a formal re-assessment by the UK Statistics Authority,
- new National Statistics – any statistics which have been suggested by ministers as a possible National Statistic, which has passed its first assessment by the UK Statistics Authority and been given National Statistic status.
Officially recognised National Statistics are identified by the quality mark below.
For more information, take a look at the complete list of National Statistics (March 2012).