Concept selected: Economic activity


The economic activity carried out by a company is defined as the creation of added value by means of the production of goods and services.

Each one of the statistical units (companies) studied frequently carries out various activities that should be classified in separate classes of the National Classification of Economic Activities. In general, the activities carried out by an economic unit may be of three types: main, secondary and auxiliary activities. The main activity differs from secondary activities in that it generates greater added value; whilst auxiliary activities are those that generate services that are not sold on the market and that only serve the unit on which they depend (administration departments, transport services or storage).

Due to the difficulties faced by companies in calculating added value when various activities are carried out, the activity which generates the greatest volume of business is considered the main activity or, failing that, that which employs the greatest number of persons.


National Classification of Economic Activities (CNAE-2009), compiled according to the conditions set out in the Regulation passing NACE Rev.2


Statistical operations

(links to the Inventory of Statistical Operations)

Concepts associated

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