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Productivity growth has declined since the late 1990s, slowing the catching-up process. Structural reforms to strengthen competition, entrepreneurship and innovation would go a long way toward enhancing it.
Israel is supporting its business sector and promoting competition in similar ways to many OECD countries, but there is room for improvement.
The comparatively large magnitude of the losses of the two largest banks of Switzerland in relation to capital has underscored the systemic risks to the economy posed by the institutions’ size relative to Swiss GDP and their extensive cross-border and cross-currency activities.
Living standards in Ireland will remain high, despite the severe contraction, but stronger structural policies would encourage sustainable long run growth.
As attention shifts to fiscal consolidation, sustaining output growth will depend increasingly on private domestic demand, requiring reforms, particularly in the labour market and the non-manufacturing sector.
Why are some policy reforms implemented while others languish? This new report aims to answer this important question by looking backwards -- at 20 structural reform efforts in 10 OECD countries, during the past two decades. This page presents the principle messages of the study.
The single market programme has already brought long–term benefits, but more can be done to enhance competitive pressures and ensure proper implementation of single market rules.
The EU needs to make the transition to a low–carbon economy, increase cross–border competition in electricity and gas markets and diversify Europe’s energy supply.
High public debt leaves virtually no room for fiscal manoeuvre to limit the impact of the crisis in Greece. The close trade and banking links established with the Balkan countries might be a risk in the near future.
Despite improved fundamentals, Mexico is hit hard by the financial crisis, being exposed to several simultaneous external shocks. A welcome, but weak, stimulus was passed for 2009, and policy will likely need to be supportive also in 2010.