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5514.0.55.001 - Australian System of Government Finance Statistics: Concepts, Sources and Methods, 2005  
Latest ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 13/07/2010   
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AMENDMENTS TO AUSTRALIAN SYSTEM OF GOVERNMENT FINANCE STATISTICS: CONCEPTS, SOURCES AND METHODS

This document describes amendments the ABS has made to the Australian System of Government Finance Statistics: Concepts, Sources and Methods (cat. no. 5514.0). The amendments relate to four areas – the treatment of Emissions Reduction Schemes, the treatment of Special Drawing Rights (SDR), the treatment of defence weapons platforms (DWP) and the Government Purpose Classification (GPC). This document should be read in conjunction with the Concepts, Sources and Methods and is considered part of the Australian System of Government Finance Statistics: Concepts, Sources and Methods (cat. no. 5514.0). These amendments align the Concepts, Sources and Methods with ABS compilation practice. The treatment of DWPs and the GPC were updated in 2010. The treatment of Special Drawing Rights was updated in 2011. The date of effect for the emission reduction schemes is 1 July 2012. The Concepts, Sources and Methods was not opened for a more general update.


Emissions Reduction Schemes

A number of Commonwealth schemes have been established by the Australian Government to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. These include the Renewable Energy Target and the Clean Energy Schemes. They are designed to reduce the volume of carbon dioxide (CO2) released into the atmosphere and thereby help mitigate the effects of climate change, and improve the global environment.

The ABS has decided to apply fundamental System of National Accounts 2008 (2008 SNA) market valuation and accrual accounting principles in ABS statistics in its measurement of emission reduction schemes. This is consistent with the principle and practice of the 2008 SNA. It is at variance with the 2012 decision of the UN Statistical Commission which effectively recommends historic valuation and cash accounting for key stocks and flows. The ABS approach is known as the financial asset approach.

This amendment to Australian System of Government Finance Statistics: Concepts, Sources and Methods (cat. no. 5514.0), relates to the Commonwealth emission reduction schemes being introduced into ABS Government Finance Statistics (ABS GFS) and outlines their treatment in ABS GFS. The amendment should be read in conjunction with the Australian System of Government Finance Statistics: Concepts, Sources and Methods (cat. no. 5514.0) and is considered part of it. The complete ABS GFS amendment for these schemes can be found under Emissions Reduction Schemes in the Explanatory Notes section.

More detailed information on such schemes, including their conceptual treatment in broader ABS macro economic statistics, is also provided in the Information Paper: Recording Emissions Reduction Schemes in ABS Statistics (cat. no. 5257.0.55.001) released on 30 July 2012.

The changes to the current ABS GFS Manual will be incorporated into the next release of the ABS GFS Manual when it is updated to bring it into line with the revised IMF GFS Manual. In addition to the general description of the changes described in the complete amendment (see Explanatory Notes), the specific parts of the current ABS GFS Manual affected by this amendment are:

    Chapter 2 (Australian GFS Framework), the text on 'Other taxes on production' in paragraph 2.134 is amended to cite taxes relating to the clean energy initiatives as an inclusion in the category;
    ETF 1114 (Other taxes on production) in the Economic Type Framework, at Appendix 3, is amended to include a reference to taxes relating to the clean energy initiatives.
In the future, the Tax Classification, at Appendix 3, will include a new class to separately identify all production taxes relating to the clean energy initiatives introduced by government. TC 53 (Other taxes on the use of goods and performance of activities n.e.c.) will be expanded to include TC 535 (Clean energy and related taxes). Its scope will include taxes liable under Renewable Energy Certificates, the Carbon Tax, the Emissions Trading Scheme and the Carbon Farming Initiative. These taxes are currently included in TC 539 (Other taxes on the use of goods and performance of activities n.e.c.).


Special Drawing Rights

Special Drawing Rights (SDR) are international reserve assets created by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and allocated to its members to supplement existing reserve assets. The ABS treatment of SDRs in Government Finance Statistics (GFS) changed on 5 April 2011 to align with revised international standards. This change means that counterpart liabilities are now recorded to match the value of the SDRs allocated by the IMF to Australia. These liabilities are regarded as being owed to IMF members collectively and not to the IMF itself. Previously, SDRs allocated by the IMF were recorded in the Australian GFS as financial assets with no corresponding liabilities and these financial assets were initially brought onto the balance sheet with matching 'other economic flow' entries.

The main paragraph and pages affected by this amendment are (the paragraph and pages have not been renumbered):

Para 2.188 - The second bullet point labelled "Borrowing" is amended to read:

"Borrowing - this item refers to liabilities, other than advances, created through direct agreements with lenders, the sale of securities and acquisition of finance leases. The item includes: (i) finance leases, which are lease arrangements in which most of the risks and benefits of ownership rest with the lessee; (ii) loans, including bank coverdrafts; long and short term loans in both Australian currency and foreign currency; credit foncier loans; and deferred payment schemes (re-purchase agreements); (iii) securities, including promissory notes; bills of exchange; certificates of deposit; fixed term deposits; Treasury notes and bonds; debentures; long term notes; net value of swaps and other derivatives in a net liability position; and the liability associated with Special Drawing Rights (SDRs) allocated to Australia by the IMF."

page 187 - "8122 Securities" is amended to read:

8122 Securities
Includes: promissory notes; bills of exchange; certificates of deposit; fixed term deposits; Treasury notes and bonds; redeemable preference shares; debentures; long term notes; net value of swaps and other derivatives that are in a net asset position; and all Special Drawing Rights (SDRs) held as financial assets.

page 190 - "8233 Securities" is amended to read:

8233 Securities
Includes: promissory notes; bills of exchange; certificates of deposit; fixed term deposits; Treasury notes and bonds; debentures; long term notes; net value of swaps and other derivatives in a net liability position; and the liability associated with IMF allocations of Special Drawing Rights (SDRs) to Australia.


Defence Weapons Platforms

Defence weapons platforms (DWPs) are the structural systems from which destructive weapons such as missiles, bombs and torpedoes are launched or fired. They include submarines, warships, fighter planes and tanks. The ABS treatment of DWPs changed in 2009 to treat DWPs as capital formation and the Concepts, Sources and Methods was updated in July 2010. Previously DWPs were fully expensed in the period they were acquired. This change means that DWPs are now seen as providing ongoing services beyond the period in which they were acquired and therefore they are treated on the same conceptual and valuation basis as other capital items recorded in government finance statistics and related economic statistics.

The main paragraphs affected by this amendment are (paragraphs have not been renumbered):

Para 2.155 - delete

Para 2.157 - delete "In keeping with the treatment of purchases of defence weapon platforms as current expenses, depreciation of such platforms is not recorded as an expense." and replace with "In keeping with the treatment of purchases of defence weapon platforms as capital formation, depreciation of such platforms is recorded as an expense."

Para 7.109 - delete the whole paragraph and replace with "The ABS's GFS system records expenditures on weapons and weapons platforms as capital formation and so follows the same conceptual and valuation basis applied to other non-financial assets. However, in the IMF's GFS system, defence weapons platforms are not treated as non-financial assets in the core tables because they are not regarded as being used repeatedly or continuously in production (although durable, they are considered single-use goods). In the IMF's GFS system defence weapons platforms (warships, submarines, military aircraft, tanks, missile carriers and launchers, etc.) with the function of launching weapons are treated as consumed in the period when they are acquired. However, the IMF's GFS system permits the recording of defence weapons platforms on a capitalised basis as a memorandum item to the balance sheet."

Type of Asset Classification (GFS input classification, Detailed Type of Asset Classification), 117 Defence weapons platforms - delete "Defence weapons platforms are identified separately because they are treated as final consumption expenditure in the ANA".


Government Purpose Classification

The Government Purpose Classification (GPC) is used to classify sales of goods and services, expenses, and net acquisition of non-financial assets of the general government sector in terms of the purposes for which the transactions are made. The GPC that is currently in use has been included in this revision.

The main paragraphs affected by this amendment are:

Para 2.200 - Replace the major groups in Table 2.6 with the following:

01 General public services

02 Defence

03 Public order and safety

04 Education

05 Health

06 Social security and welfare

07 Housing and community amenities

08 Recreation and culture

09 Fuel and energy

10 Agriculture, forestry, fishing and hunting

11 Mining and mineral resources, other than fuels; manufacturing; and construction

12 Transport and communications

13 Other economic affairs

14 Other purposes

Para 2.201 to 2.214 - Delete these paragraphs and replace with the following:

2.201 General public services (GPC 01) include legislative and executive affairs, financial and fiscal affairs, external affairs, foreign economic aid, general research, general economic and social services, general statistical services, and government superannuation benefits.

2.202 Defence (GPC 02) includes military and civil defence affairs, foreign military aid and defence research.

2.203 Public order and safety (GPC 03) includes police and fire protection services, law courts and legal services, prisons and corrective services, and control of domestic animals and livestock.

2.204 Education (GPC 04) includes primary and secondary education, university and other higher education, technical and further education, preschool and special education, and transportation of students.

2.205 Health (GPC 05) includes general hospitals, repatriation hospitals, mental health institutions, nursing homes, special hospitals, hospital benefits, medical clinics and practitioners, dental clinics and practitioners, maternal and infant health, ambulance services, medical benefits, school and other public health services, pharmaceuticals, medical aids and appliances, and health research.

2.206 Social security and welfare (GPC 06) includes sickness benefits; benefits to ex-servicemen and their dependants; invalid and other permanent disablement benefits; old age benefits, widows, deserted wives, divorcees and orphans benefits; unemployment benefits; family and child benefits; sole parents benefits; family and child welfare; and aged and handicapped welfare.

2.207 Housing and community amenities (GPC 07) includes housing and community development, water supply, household garbage and other sanitation, sewerage, urban stormwater drainage, protection of the environment, and street lighting.

2.208 Recreation and culture (GPC 08) includes public halls and civic centres, swimming pools and beaches, national parks and wildlife, libraries, creative and performing arts, museums, art galleries, broadcasting, and film production.

2.209 Fuel and energy (GPC 09) includes coal, petroleum, gas, nuclear affairs, and electricity.

2.210 Agriculture, forestry, fishing and hunting (GPC 10) includes agricultural land management, agricultural water resources management, agricultural support schemes, agricultural research and extension services, forestry, fishing, and hunting.

2.211 Mining and mineral resources, other than fuels; manufacturing; and construction (GPC 11) includes activities relating to prospecting, mining and mineral resources development; manufacturing activities and research into manufacturing methods, materials and industrial management; and activities associated with the building and construction industry.

2.212 Transport and communications (GPC 12) includes road construction, road maintenance, parking, water transport, rail transport, air transport, pipelines, multi-mode urban transit systems, and communications.

2.213 Other economic affairs (GPC 13) includes storage, saleyards, markets, tourism and area promotion, and labour and employment affairs.

2.214 Other purposes (GPC 14) includes public debt transactions, general purpose inter-government transactions, and natural disaster relief.

Para 5.34 - replace "GPC 341" with "GPC 141".

Appendix 3: Expanded Economic Type Framework Classification (GFS input classification, Detailed Economic Type Framework Classification) - remove GPC from all revenue items except 1120 Sales of goods and services.

Appendix 3: Detailed Government Purpose Classification (GFS input classification, Detailed Government Purpose Classification) - replace with the revised detailed Government Purpose Classification in this publication.

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