Today’s discussions focus on the importance of good governance for inclusive and sustainable growth. This is a vast topic – as can be seen from the diversity of issues to be covered in the Ministerial labs later this morning – so I’d like to focus on two key areas: the role of regulation; and the imperative to shape a new vision for the public service.
At an international level, we continue to face many challenges – slow growth, unemployment, growing inequality, loss of trust – all the legacies of the crisis. We are also confronting the risk of dramatic consequences from climate change. But, crucially, we face a growing appetite for action. For results.
Good corporate governance is a means to create a business environment of trust, transparency and accountability in order to support investment, financial stability and sustainable economic growth. The Principles provide policy makers and regulators with the necessary building blocks to create such an environment, based on sound rules and regulations.
It is an honour to kick-off this multi-stakeholder panel on the OECD Principles on Water Governance. We are here because we share a common cause: better water governance for better lives.
The World Economic Forum’s Global Challenge Partnership is a new and important weapon in the international anti-corruption arsenal. The OECD has also made tackling corruption a priority.
Six years into the crisis, people’s faith in government is stagnating at record lows. The 2014 Edelman Trust Barometer shows a continuing decline of trust in government to 44%, down from 48% in 2013. Only 15% of respondents in the 27 countries surveyed this year said they trusted their government leaders to make ethical and moral decisions.
This Initiative was created following the OECD’s commitment at the 6th World Water Forum in Marseille in 2012 to spearhead robust economic and evidence-based analysis, tailored policy dialogues, and multi-stakeholder consultation in support of better water governance.
“Life is full of alternatives but no choice.” G20 leaders at the summit in Brisbane, Australia, in November should reflect on these words by Australian writer Patrick White, a Nobel Laureate, as they prepare their economic strategies for the years to come.
The OECD has worked closely with both the European Commission and the Committee of Regions for many years and continues to do so to promote effective regional development. In this respect, the OECD signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Committee of the Regions, recognising prior and future work together.
The OECD has been promoting public sector reforms inspired by the principles of open government for more than two decades. We believe in their capacity to improve good governance frameworks, to help government regain citizens’ trust and to create economic opportunities.