Cancer data in Indonesia are mainly based on pathology diagnosis, compiled from all pathology laboratories. Cancer dataproduced by other departments (e.g Surgery, Obstetrics and Gynaecology ) comprise case series of cases seen or treated inthat department. Some cancer data were also obtainable from reports of hospitals, recording the numbers of cancer patientstreated as inpatients or outpatients.Before 1970 health facilities ( including medical doctors and diagnostic equipment ) were very minimal especially in thecancer field. The first priority at that time was to overcome infectious diseases which were the most important causes ofmorbidity and mortality. A first step toward population based cancer registration was taken by the department of pathologyDiponegoro University in Semarang. Since 1970, this registry has been able to produce minimum incidence rates of cancerfor the population of Semarang city. Population based cancer incidence data have been available since 1985, the first datafrom the cancer registry in Semarang, for the period 1985-1989, was published in 1990, with support by the IndonesianCancer Foundation.