The equal inclusion of women in economic life is a key driver of economic growth throughout the world, including the Pacific Alliance countries of Chile, Colombia, Mexico and Peru. Talent is lost, and future growth suffers, when women do not have the same opportunities as men to reach their full potential in the labour market. All countries of the world have work to do to advance the equality agenda, and Chile, Colombia, Mexico, and Peru have much to do. While girls and women in the Pacific Alliance are progressing on the path to gender equality and inclusive growth, significant roadblocks remain.
The OECD/Korea Policy Centre fosters the exchange of technical information and policy experiences relating to the Asia Pacific region in areas such as health statistics, pension reforms and social policy and expenditure.
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Although the United Kingdom excels in terms of access to health services, it is a middling performer relative to OECD peers in the domains of health status, risk factors and quality. Investment is required to improve acute care and primary care services, prevent obesity and harmful use of alcohol, and expand coverage of long-term care.
Despite unprecedented progress over the past century, gender gaps in the labour market persist throughout the emerging world and are accompanied by important skill gaps. Women tend to perform worse in STEM subjects, have lower financial literacy and business knowledge than men. The OECD Employment Outlook 2016 paints an up-to-date picture of gender gaps in 16 emerging economies and outlines a comprehensive set of policy recommendations.
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Sweden has a healthy population and its health system is high-performing in many areas. A combination of relatively generous public funding and reforms focusing on quality measurement, competition and choice has produced good outcomes, especially in the hospital sector.
OECD and the European Observatory on Heath Systems and Policies joined forces to conduct a study on the economics of public health and health promotion.
Over the past decade, many OECD countries have introduced new policies to tackle excessive waiting times for elective treatments with some success. However, in the wake of the recent economic downturn and severe pressures on public budgets, waiting times may rise again, and it is important to understand which policies work.
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Skill requirements are changing rapidly as a result of structural shifts. Workforce employability is essential to turn structural change into an opportunity for all. Education and training systems, labour markets, workers and workplaces will have to become more adaptable. A set of concrete actionable measures is proposed to improve the employability of each economy’s workforce.
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The German health system is characterised by high levels of human and physical resources guaranteeing good access to care with a low direct financial burden for patients. Nevertheless, the changing demographic situation with a rapidly ageing society creating new demand for health services will pose a challenge for Germany’s health system.
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The labour market recovery in the Netherlands is lagging behind. As of the last quarter of 2015, the unemployment rate stood at 6.7%, just one percentage point lower than its cyclical peak and three percentage points higher from its level at the start of the global financial crisis. As a result of the sluggish recovery, the unemployment rate in the Netherlands is now slightly higher than that for the OECD as a whole.