The Western Balkans region has clear aspirations to improve its economic competitiveness and integrate further into Europe. A highly skilled population is critical to achieving these goals, which makes creating and maintaining high quality and equitable education systems a vital part of regional development efforts. Results from the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) show that learning outcomes in the region have improved over time, but that the improvement has not been equitable. Some students are performing similarly to students from countries in the European Union, while others are lagging further behind. This report, developed in co-operation with the European Commission and UNICEF, analyses PISA data in detail to identify the strengths, challenges and unique features of education systems in the Western Balkans. Drawing upon a rich knowledge base of education policy and practice in the region, it makes recommendations about how systems in the region can improve learning for all students. This report will be of interest to regional policy-makers as well as individuals who wish to learn more about education in the Western Balkans.
Published regularly, this newsletter reports on the activities of the OECD/GVH Regional Centre for Competition. It provides information about recent cases and developments in the participating economies in Eastern and South-Eastern Europe.
Government at a Glance: Western Balkans presents information on public governance in the Western Balkan region – covering Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Montenegro, North Macedonia, and Serbia, and compares it to OECD and OECD-EU countries. This first regional edition features 40 indicators on public finance, public employment, centre of government, budgeting practices and procedures, human resources management, public procurement, digital government, core government results and serving citizens. Governance indicators provide important benchmarks on public administration systems, practices and performance. Indicators are presented in a user-friendly format using charts, with brief descriptive analyses of the major findings, and a methodological section on the definition of the indicator and any limitations in data comparability.
La Macédoine du Nord a aujourd’hui signé la Convention multilatérale pour la mise en œuvre des mesures relatives aux conventions fiscales pour prévenir l'érosion de la base d'imposition et le transfert de bénéfices (la Convention), devenant ainsi le 94e juridiction à adhérer à la Convention, qui couvre désormais plus de 1 650 conventions fiscales bilatérales.
How can assessment and evaluation policies work together more effectively to improve student outcomes in primary and secondary schools? The country reports in this series analyse major issues facing evaluation and assessment policy to identify improvements that can be made to enhance the quality, equity and efficiency of school education. The Republic of North Macedonia has made remarkable progress in expanding access to education and strengthening institutional capacity. Yet, the majority of young Macedonians leave school without mastering the basic competencies for life and work and students’ background continues to influence performance. This review, developed in cooperation with UNICEF, provides North Macedonia with recommendations to help strengthen its evaluation and assessment system, by moving towards a system where assessment provides students with helpful feedback to improve learning. It will be of interest to North Macedonia, as well as other countries looking to make more effective use of their evaluation and assessment system to improve quality and equity, and result in better outcomes for all students.
Robust SME sectors are critical to the prosperity of the six Western Balkan economies and Turkey, accounting for over 70% of those employed in the business sector and generating 65% of value added in these seven economies. Yet their potential remains untapped, as SMEs across the region grapple with numerous challenges that hamper their growth and productivity. They are still under-represented in international trade, and their contributions to value-added remain comparatively low as they have difficulties in moving or expanding into high value-added activities. This report provides a comprehensive overview of the implementation of the ten principles of the Small Business Act for Europe (SBA) in the seven EU pre-accession economies over the period 2016-18. It monitors progress against similar assessments performed over the past decade and identifies the outstanding challenges affecting SMEs. It also provides targeted recommendations to remove barriers to SME development and unleashing their potential for driving inclusive economic growth.
The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia today signed the multilateral Convention on Mutual Administrative Assistance in Tax Matters, making it the 124th jurisdiction to join the world’s leading instrument for boosting transparency and combating cross-border tax evasion.