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Unemployment in South Africa is extremely high and unevenly distributed, being concentrated among young less skilled blacks.
Traditionally, the Norwegian compulsory education system has focused strongly on the linked goals of equal opportunities to learn, comprehensive and inclusive education.
Despite considerable progress in many areas, there remains substantial scope for making government operations more cost-effective. Brazil spends a high share of GDP on selected government financed programmes in relation to many OECD countries and its emerging-market peers, but outcome indicators are often comparatively poor. As a result, in the absence of efficiency gains, further increases in spending would need to be financed
Stimulating competition, innovation and investment in services and fostering the employment of low-skilled workers would help increase potential output and social cohesion.
While Austria’s education system has long equipped the Austrian labour force with good vocational skills, it now faces major challenges to provide youth with new, higher and more generic skills.
Though labour market outcomes have improved markedly in past years, some challenges remain such as low labour force participation of the elderly, low employment rates of youth and rising labour market dualism.
This working paper suggests that while student achievement is above the OECD average in science and at the OECD average in reading and math according to the 2006 PISA study, weaker students tend to do badly by international comparison.
The authorities have undertaken numerous structural reforms since the last OECD Economic Survey was published in June 2007 and many of those reforms go in the direction of the recommendations offered at that time. These efforts will have to be pursued and the momentum of reform maintained, with the greatest challenge being to raise the employment rate of youths and seniors in order to restore the health of public finances and sustain
More flexible labour markets will be a key adjustment mechanism in the current recession as well as in the medium term if Estonia is to become a knowledge-based economy.
Remarks by Jørgen Elmeskov, OECD Acting Chief Economist at the OECD/IMF conference on structural reform in Europe on 17 March 2008.