The Malta Statistics Authority (MSA) was established by Act XXIV of 2000, which came into force on 1 March 2001. The Authority exercises a regulatory function regarding resources relating to the collection, compilation and publishing of official statistics, and to make provision with respect to matters ancillary thereto or connected therewith.
Its functions are defined in section 7 of the said Act as follows:
- To examine and submit, for the approval of the Minister, the business plan and financial estimates drawn up by the Director General for the administration of the National Statistics Office;
- To regulate and to generally supervise the production of official statistics in accordance with international requirements and standards;
- To discuss and advise on statistical matters, including methodologies, relating to the collection, compilation and dissemination of statistics;
- To establish priorities in responding to the demand for official statistics;
- To liaise between the Office and other public bodies concerning the supply of data and the coordination of activities with statistical implications;
- To publish the business plan after its approval by the Minister of Finance;
- To disseminate the knowledge of official statistics;
- To consider and comment on, where necessary, the yearly report submitted by the Director General on the work of the National Statistics Office as required by article 9(5)(g).
The Authority has a distinct legal framework, and the legal and judicial representation is vested in the Chairperson, Prof. Albert Leone Ganado. The National Statistics Office is the executive arm of the Authority.