Industry of establishment

Status: This standard was approved as a departmental standard on February 21, 2018.


Industry refers to a generally homogeneous group of economic producing units, primarily engaged in a specific set of activities. An activity is a particular method of combining goods and services inputs, labour and capital to produce one or more goods and/or services (products). In most cases, the activities that define an industry are homogeneous with respect to the production processes used.

Establishment refers to the level in the statistical hierarchy below the company in the Business Register statistical hierarchy, and at which the accounting data required to measure production are available (principal inputs, revenues, salaries and wages). The establishment is defined as the most homogeneous unit of production for which the business maintains accounting records. From these records, it is possible to assemble all the data elements required to compile the gross value of production (total sales or shipments, and inventories), the cost of materials and services, and labour and capital used in production.

Conformity to relevant internationally recognized standards

There are no relevant internationally recognized standards.


Additional information

The industry classification is principally designed for the classification of establishments.

However, the classification can be used to indicate the primary activity of any business unit. On the business register, all the statistical units of businesses (enterprises, companies, establishments and locations) are classified to the industry classification.

When statistics, such as financial statistics, compiled for statistical units other than establishments are classified to the industry classification for dissemination, the statistical unit for which the data are compiled and the extent to which the data can be compared to establishment-based production data should be clearly explained.

Persons can be assigned a derived industry classification. They may be categorized by the industry of the producing unit that employs them.


Relation to previous version

  • Industry of establishment February 21, 2018 to current

    This standard replaces the previous standard for industry of establishment. The previous standard did not situate establishment within the Business Register statistical hierarchy. The current standard changes this, and defines establishment within the Business Register statistical hierarchy.

  • Industry of establishment January 18, 1999 to February 20, 2018

    This was the departmental standard from January 18, 1999 to February 20, 2018.

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