Technology and innovation are crucial to solving Latin America’s twin challenges – low productivity and high inequality. The OECD is working intensively to bridge the two.
Kazakhstan’s economy and society have undergone deep transformations since the country declared independence in 1991. Kazakhstan’s growth performance since 2000 has been impressive, averaging almost 8% per annum in real terms and leading to job creation and progress in the well-being of its citizens. Extractive industries play an important role in the dynamism of the economy, but sources of growth beyond natural resource sectors remain underexploited. In the social arena, dimensions of well-being beyond incomes and jobs have not kept pace with economic growth.
Kazakhstan has set itself the goal of becoming one of the 30 most developed countries in the world by 2050. To sustain rapid, inclusive and sustainable growth and social progress, Kazakhstan will need to overcome a number of significant challenges. Natural-resource dependency, the concentration of economic clout and a fragile and underdeveloped financial sector limit diversification and economic dynamism. Widespread corruption still affects multiple state functions, undermines the business environment, meritocracy and entrepreneurial spirit. More generally, the state has limited capacity to fulfil some of its functions, which affects the delivery of public services like health and education, as well as the protection of the environment and the generation of skills.
Education, social protection and entrepreneurship are among the areas where priority action is needed to halt the slowdown in economic growth and tackle inequality across Latin America, according to the OECD.
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After a period of relatively robust growth that has allowed tens of millions of poorer households to join the global middle class, growth in Latin America has slowed recently. To close the still large gaps in living standards in relation to advanced economies, the region needs to significantly raise productivity growth while making sure that everybody has the opportunity to benefit.
Backed by strong economic growth Chile has made substantial progress in improving the quality of life of its citizens. Nonetheless, gaps in living standards vis-à-vis other OECD countries remain large and there are strong differences in well-being across the Chilean population. The government has introduced important steps to strengthen redistribution and improve equality of opportunities, including ambitious tax, labour and education reforms. But there is room to further improve the design of many policies to promote inclusiveness. Moreover, to sustain progress in well-being, Chile also needs faster productivity growth which stagnated until recently. This requires policies that foster competition, improve human capital accumulation and increase the diversification of the economy that still relies heavily on commodity exports.
This group has become a key forum for discussing emerging challenges and promoting novel ways of addressing them. It offers opportunities for cross-committee, inter-disciplinary and horizontal discussion not only to think about policy linkages, trade-offs and complementarities, but also to do some soul-searching, learn from the past, and update our analytical frameworks in order to address the present and, above all, the future.
Composite leading indicators continue to point to stable growth momentum in the OECD area
Ageing has a wide range of impacts on individuals and society as a whole. But the consequences for health care, working life, income and well-being in general are not always what many people imagine. OECD Insights: Ageing: Debate the Issues discusses the problems, challenges, and opportunities that ageing brings to citizens and governments in developed and developing countries. Experts on demography, medical research, pensions, employment and other domains from inside and outside the OECD present their latest analyses and views on one of the most important trends shaping our societies.
Reforms over the past two decades have produced a well-balanced, modern tax system. However, considerable revenues will be needed in the years ahead to expand social spending and infrastructure in order to raise growth and well-being. The challenge is to generate these revenues without penalising growth or exacerbating inequality.
This paper re-estimates the elasticities of government revenue and expenditure items with respect to the output gap for OECD countries. These elasticities are used by the OECD to calculate cyclically adjusted fiscal balances. The study updates the earlier 2005 study using the most recent datasets and tax codes, the coverage being confined in this paper to 35 countries, the 34 OECD member states and Latvia.