4/06/2015 - Ministers expressed full support for the OECD’s global relations strategy, as an essential element to increase its impact and relevance. This strategy has been the centrepiece of Secretary-General Angel Gurría’s vision to transform the Organisation into a more inclusive, global policy network and a prime forum for evidence-based policy exchange and global standard setting.
Mr. Gurría, who has been renewed as head of the OECD until 2021, has confirmed the objective of strengthening links with key emerging economies, including through their possible membership, as one of the priorities of the Organisation.
A Ministerial Council Statement issued at the conclusion of the meeting supported strengthening relations with the OECD’s Key Partners – Brazil, China, India, Indonesia, and South Africa.
Ministers also welcomed the progress made by Colombia and Latvia in their ongoing accession processes and the opening of accession discussions with Costa Rica and Lithuania.
Ministers called for the Organisation to consider the establishment of a regional programme for Latin America and the Caribbean, and for it to strengthen the regional component of its work with Africa. They also welcomed the recent launch of Country Programmes for Kazakhstan, and Peru, a planned programme with Morocco, ongoing cooperation with Ukraine, and progress made with existing regional programmes, including those for the Middle East and North Africa, Eurasia, Southeast Asia and Southeast Europe.
“Expanding outreach and cooperation with emerging economies worldwide is central to the OECD mission,” said Mr Gurría. “By deepening our partnerships, we are enriching the global policy dialogue, notably as concerns our work for the G20, and reinforcing our efforts to develop better policies for better lives of people worldwide.”
On June 3, OECD and Indonesia launched a Comprehensive Joint Work Programme, aiming for increased co-operation on fiscal and budgetary reform, education and skills development, anti-corruption activities, SME development, infrastructure financing, good regulatory practices, corporate governance, trade, green growth and health.
At the launching ceremony with Indonesia’s Minister of Finance Bambang Brodjonegoro, Mr Gurría said the “ambitious set of undertakings will clearly be of mutual benefit. Indonesia will have access to expertise in a number of policy areas, and the OECD will better incorporate Indonesian perspectives into its work.” (read the full speech)
Mr Gurría highlighted that the new Indonesian Programme will serve as a model for co-operation with other Key Partners. He noted that a similar work programme is being developed with China, and is expected to be signed on 1 July, coinciding with the forthcoming visit by Premier Li Keqiang. This high-level visit is a sign of the strengthening relationship between China and the OECD, which includes growing cooperation in the G20 context and the launching of the China-OECD G20 Skills Development Programme.
The OECD and Brazil signed a new Cooperation Agreement the same day, taking a longstanding partnership to a new level. The Agreement, signed by Brazil’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Mauro Vieira and Minister of Finance Joaquim Levy, is also expected to lead to the preparation of a Joint Work Programme by the end of this year.
“We greatly value the perspective that Brazil brings to the table and the contribution it makes to our policy debates,” Mr Gurría said. “Working with Brazil not only allows for an exchange of views, but it has helped to ensure the relevance of the OECD’s contributions to the global policy debate on making growth inclusive and sustainable.” (read the full speech)
The 2015 Ministerial Council meeting, held on 3-4 June, also underscored the importance of ongoing accession processes. Colombia and Latvia were invited to start accession discussions in May 2013. This was followed by a decision in April 2015 to invite Costa Rica and Lithuania.
The 2015 ministerial meeting saw participation of the five Key Partners, four accession countries and for the first time, of delegations from Peru, Kazakhstan, Morocco, Senegal and Myanmar, along with Argentina and Hong Kong, China, who are regularly invited to the trade session.
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