1303.0 - Discover the ABS, 2010  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 20/05/2010   
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ABS in Brief

The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) is Australia’s national statistical agency. Our mission is to assist and encourage informed decision-making, research and discussion within governments and the community, by leading a high-quality, objective and responsive national statistical service.

The ABS has a key central role in expanding and improving the range of statistics available on the performance of our economy, the well-being of our population, the condition of our environment and the challenges faced by regional and rural communities. This not only involves the ABS collecting, compiling, analysing and disseminating a wide range of statistics itself, but also working with other federal, state and local government agencies to help them do likewise with the vast array of data they collect during the course of administrative processes.


  • maintain a high-quality website with a wide range of freely available statistics
  • design and conduct the five-yearly national Census of Population and Housing
  • design and conduct complex surveys from which national economic indicators are derived, such as the Household Expenditure Survey and the Economic Activity Survey
  • analyse and release the data collected to provide meaningful and high-quality statistics which are widely used by governments, businesses and the media
  • provide statistical consulting, modelling, analysis, training and support.
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ABS in the Media

The ABS is a valuable source of news stories and objective information that can be used to inform and interest the public. It is drawn on extensively by both national and international media. The headline news stories that typically follow the release of important and well-known statistics (such as unemployment or inflation) are the most obvious examples of the ABS in the media. The population and social statistics published by the ABS are also well received by journalists because they are a rich source of stories about Australians’ lives and their environment. The media also shows a keen interest in the Population Census, about how it is run and the information it provides.

Each year there are more than 10 000 newspaper and magazine articles, and a similar number of internet, television and radio news stories about the statistics released by the ABS. Refer to News & Media for more information.

Journalists wanting to contact the ABS to arrange interviews with ABS spokespeople can call the media hotline on 1300 175 070.
Discover our website www.abs.gov.au

All statistics on www.abs.gov.au can be accessed and downloaded free of charge. The ABS website contains over 1 million pages and is updated daily at 11:30 am AEST. This means you can access a wide range of new product releases each day. You can also scan the latest headlines, find up-to-date information about services the ABS provides, and read the most recent ABS media releases just by visiting our home page.

The ABS website is the primary access point for the majority of users of ABS information. It contains ABS publications and statistics released since 1994, and its pages are accessed about 5 million times each month, or 62 million times per year.

Visit www.abs.gov.au for:

Have your say

The ABS website is constantly evolving to meet your online needs. We regularly ask our online clients for feedback about the site. As a result the website is continuously being upgraded to meet users’ requirements. This means a design which is easy for you to use and navigate at the click of your mouse.
Contact us to have your say.