Aim of this survey

The Annual Survey of International Trade in Services (AITIS) collects information on the imports and exports of 52 different types of services (products) by country of origin and destination. The primary uses of the results of the survey are in the trade in services current account of the balance of payments and the trade in services component within the expenditure measure of gross domestic product (GDP). The Department for International Trade (DIT) make significant use of the results. The data collected by this survey are standard components of the International Monetary Fund's (IMF) balance of payments manual and it is a condition of membership that these items are collected.

What you need to know

To complete the survey, you will need the following information:

  • details about your business' international trade in services

All information you provide is strictly confidential.

Survey information

Selection criteria: UK trading businesses registered for VAT and/or PAYE

Population: approximately 100,000

Sample: approximately 24,000

Frequency: annually

Dispatch date: between 4 and 6 January

Return-by date: 5 February

Dispatch and return-by dates are a guide. They are subject to change because of national holidays and weekends.

Why you were selected

Your business has been selected from a directory of businesses in the UK that are registered for VAT and/or PAYE or with Companies House. Your response ensures we represent your industry.

The AITIS is conducted under the provisions of the Statistics of Trade Act 1947. Once selected, your business is legally obliged to comply. You cannot appeal your selection.

Why you have received this survey

We survey businesses of all sizes to ensure our statistics are representative of the UK economy. We select large businesses (those with 100 or more employees) for any relevant Office for National Statistics (ONS) business surveys because their information is so significant.

We select some small and medium businesses, usually for a set period of time then replace them with other businesses from their industry. They are very important to us as their trading patterns are often very different to large businesses.

How to complete this survey

The AITIS is conducted through a Secure Electronic File Transfer (SEFT) spreadsheet. To view an example of what you may be asked, please see the 'Related downloads' section of this page. However, depending on the nature of your business activity you may be asked additional questions. You will also find guidelines explaining how to complete your return. Once complete, please upload the spreadsheet to the ONS Survey Data Collection system.

Complete this survey online.

If you return the data in a different format, it will be returned to you to amend and re-submit.

Reminders are issued automatically, so you may receive one if you submit data just before or after the return date.

If you need help

If your question is not answered above, you may be able to find the answer on the About ONS business surveys section.

You can call us on +44 (0)300 1234 931. Please enter the three digit survey ID code 058.

From outside the UK: +44 (0)1633 810495.

Er mwyn gwneud cais am ffurflen Gymraeg (to speak to someone in Welsh): +44 (0)300 1234 921.

Related downloads