An institutional unit is an economic entity which is capable, in its own right, of owning assets, incurring liabilities, engaging in economic activities and entering into transactions with other entities (SNA, 2012, chapter 4 paragraph 4.2).
Institutional sectors in the SNA are groups of similar institutional units (SNA, 2012, chapter 4, paragraph 4.16). All institutional units refer to one of the five institutional sectors:
For example, according to the SEEA paragraph 5.346, timber resources may be inaccessible if they are: 1) in areas where forest harvesting operations are restricted or prohibited; 2) in remote or inaccessible areas, i.e., where harvesting is not profitable; 3) not biologically suitable for inclusion among commercially harvested wood species. Resources inaccessible for procurement do not have economic value but they are still in the scope of the SEEA in physical terms, because they meet the definition of environmental resources and can be used to generate profit.
However, having no economic value, such resources are not recorded in the asset accounts for timber resources in monetary terms. It is therefore necessary to provide a clear definition of the scope of timber resources in physical terms in order to ensure proper correspondence between accounts in physical and monetary terms (paragraph 5.347).