Productivity growth has been low. Strengthening the institutions, enhancing competition, promoting innovation and access to finance and transport infrastructure are all key. Such reforms need to go together with making Costa Rica a more inclusive society by improving the quality of education and reducing gender inequalities.
Source: OECD June 2016 Economic Outlook database; OECD, Income Distribution and Poverty database; and OECD Secretariat calculations from EU-SILC – preliminary results.
OECD Economic Surveys: Costa Rica 2016. Chapter 2: Boosting Productivity to sustain income convergence.
Pisu M. and F. Villalobos (2016), "Costa Rica’s Infrastructure Challenge", forthcoming.
Monge-González, R.; Torres-Carballo, F. (2014): Productividad y Crecimiento de las Empresas en Costa Rica ¿Es posible combatir la pobreza y la desigualdad por medio de mejoras en la productividad?
In 2010, Costa Rica established the Presidential Council on Competitiveness and Innovation (CPCI), to co-ordinate policies across institutions. It is composed of three sub-councils – Council on Competitiveness, Council on Innovation and Human Talent, and Alliance for Employment and Development – with representatives from ministries and the private sector; and it has the support of a small technical unit.
Other efforts to improve the coordination and implementation of policies to boost productivity are also underway. These include a draft law to create an agency (Agencia Costarricense de Fomento Productivo, Innovación y Valor Agregado, FOMPRODUCE) with a public-private governance structure, which will centralise funds and functions currently dispersed across several agencies, to facilitate the establishment of businesses and promote innovation.