Secretary-General of the United Nations invites governments to celebrate World Statistics Day 2020


by António Guterres,
Secretary-General, United Nations

4 September 2020

As the United Nations marks its seventy-fifth anniversary and the world deploys data to face a common challenge, let us use World Statistics Day to spotlight the role of statistics in advancing sustainable development for all

António Guterres

In a letter to the heads of state dated 2 September 2020, the Secretary-General of the United Nations, Mr. António Guterres, invited governments, as the primary producer, user and beneficiary of official statistics, to lend their full support to this year’s World Statistics Day. The Secretary-General recalled the General Assembly resolution 69/282 which called for the observance of World Statistics Day every fifth year.

The Secretary-General pointed out in his letter that "current, reliable, timely and trusted data are necessary to understand the changing world in which we live.” He also noted that “the unprecedented Coronavirus pandemic has elevated the importance of data and statistics, and demonstrated how linking data to geospatial information can help us to track the dynamics of a rapidly changing global situation.” The Secretary-General shared that “in establishing this observance, the (General) Assembly invited all Member States, the United Nations system and other international and regional organizations, as well as civil society, research institutions, media and all producers and users of official statistics, to do their part to highlight the value of statistics in meeting the challenges of our time.” The General Assembly is the main deliberative, policymaking and representative organ of the United Nations.

In his message to all heads of state, the Secretary-General underlined that "investing in data and statistics is the only way in which we will be able to make the decisions needed to respond and recover from the COVID-19 pandemic and get on track to deliver the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030.”

The full text of the Secretary-General's letter is available here:

About The Author