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Given the high debt level, large-scale increases in social spending are not affordable. Instead, Japan needs to focus on the underlying cause of rising equality and poverty through structural reforms that can provide a double dividend by boosting economic growth and social cohesion.
Without adequate investment in skills, people languish on the margins of society, technological progress does not translate into inclusive economic growth, and countries can no longer compete in an increasingly knowledge-based global society, said OECD Secretary-General.
The Great East Japan Earthquake took a heavy toll of human lives and inflicted a massive economic damage, estimated at 3½ per cent of GDP. This event requires considerable time and a nation-wide effort of reconstruction. This is the first component of Prime Minister Noda’s “Strategies to Revitalise Japan”, which we very much welcome and support, said OECD Secretary-General.
Policy making, including trade negotiations, must be based on hard evidence. At the end of this year, we expect to release a database of value-added trade statistics for both goods and services, involving 56 economies – including all G20 countries covering more than 95% of world output.
In many countries, government debt is now at levels unprecedented in the post-war era, at around 100% of GDP across all OECD countries. Although deleveraging is necessary, we will not bring confidence and growth back by only promoting austerity, said OECD Secretary-General.
Donald J. Johnston, has been awarded the French Légion d’honneur for his service as Secretary-General of the OECD from 1996 to 2006.
We have passed the limits of our planet’s capacity to support us. It’s time for a big shift, to further advance our understanding on green growth and sustainable development, to share policy experiences and to foster a new environmental consensus, said the OECD Secretary-General.
Throughout the global and European economic crisis, Poland has been the OECD’s champion in terms of cumulative real GDP growth. But Poland must continue to build on its past achievements and make further progress in areas where reforms are needed to sustain strong growth in the years to come.
Weak financial conditions, fiscal consolidation and economic adjustment are restricting demand in the short-term before the long-term benefits on stability and growth are felt, Mr Gurría said. Decisive action to restore confidence and support demand is needed now, he added.
Over the last four years we have lived and worked under the impact of the greatest economic crisis of our lifetimes. Recent actions in Europe have cleared a bit the fog but the confidence in the markets is still shaky and the long-term growth perspective of Europe is muted.