The purpose of quarterly reporting on general government debt is to follow the indebtedness of public economies in EU Member States in accordance with the Growth and Stability Pact of the EU. The EU Regulation concerning quarterly reporting came into force in 2004. The statistics contain general government debt at the end of each quarter, divided by sub-sector into the debt balances of central government, local government and social security funds. General government debt by quarter differs by definition from the general government debt according to financial accounts in that general government debt is at nominal prices and comprises only currency and transferable deposits, securities and loans. In addition, general government debt is consolidated debt, which means that it excludes debt items between sub-sectors. For this reason, general government debt (S13) is smaller than the combined debts of its sub-sectors. The data reported by the different Member States are comparable with each other.