Definition: Import prices (Index)
It is the objective of the import price indices to measure the monthly transaction price development of imported goods purchased from non-domestic areas by domestic residents. All the related services are initially excluded from the scope. The price indices should track the price movements of comparable items over time.
It is essential that all price-determining characteristics of the products are taken into account, including quantity of units sold, transport provided, rebates, service conditions, guarantee conditions origin and destination. The specification must be such that in subsequent reference periods, the observation unit is able uniquely to identify the product and to provide the appropriate price per unit.
The non-domestic market is defined as third parties, which are not resident in the same national territory as the observation unit. The domestic market is defined as third parties resident in the same national territory as the observation unit.
The following limitations apply for the scope of prices:
- imports by households, government units and non-profit institutions are excluded,
- the underlying trade regimes and statistical procedure are the special trade system and normal imports as well as imports for inward processing are included. Imports for repair are not covered,
- the product coverage is limited to the CPA C, D and E products. Related services are excluded.
The following rules apply for the definition of prices:
- The appropriate price is the cif (cost, insurance, freight) price at the border excluding all duties and taxes on the goods and services to be shouldered by the observation unit.
- Intra-company transfers should be taken into account as long as these transfers are based on prices, which are market based or market influenced or if market prices are insignificant.
- In order to show the true development of price movements, it should be an actual transaction price, and not a list price, therefore discounts should be deducted from the price.
- In order to show pure price movements the price index compilation should take into account and adjust for quality changes in products.
- Other price-determining characteristics of the products should be treated in a consistent way as well.
- The imports are recorded when the ownership of the goods is transferred (i.e. when the parties record transaction in their books or account).
- The transfer of ownership of boats and aircraft or similar products from a person established in a non-member country to a person established in the Member State in question is counted as an import.
The index should in principle reflect the average price during the reference period. In practice the information actually collected may refer to a particular day in the middle of the reference period that should be determined as a representative figure for the reference period. For products with a significant impact on the national economy that are known to have, at least occasionally, a volatile price development, it is important that the index does indeed reflect average prices.
The indices of the import prices require a separate calculation according to the country of consignment of the product. The country of consignment is determined in a consistent way with customs procedures. Import prices are sub-divided into imports from euro-zone countries (340z) and imports from other countries (340x).
European Union, Commission Regulation (EC) No 1503/2006 of 28 September 2006 implementing and amending Council Regulation (EC) No 1165/98 concerning short-term statistics as regards definitions of variables, list of variables and frequency of data compilation