An estimated 22% of the world’s largest firms are now effectively under state control, this is the highest percentage in decades. These firms are likely to remain a prominent feature of the global marketplace in the near future. The upsurge of state-owned enterprises (SOEs) as global competitors has given rise to concerns related to a level playing field. Some business competitors and observers claim that preferential treatment granted by governments to SOEs in return for public policy obligations carried out at home can give SOEs a competitive edge in their foreign expansion. The OECD has taken a multidisciplinary approach, looking at the issue from the competition, investment, corporate governance and trade policy perspectives. The report aims to sort fact from fiction, and develop a stronger understanding, based on empirical evidence, on how to address growing policy concerns with regard to SOE internationalisation. The report concludes that although there is no clear evidence of systematic abusive behaviour by SOE investors, frictions need to be addressed, in view of keeping the global economy open to trade and investment.
Secretary-General Angel Gurría discusses the efforts of the OECD to support Egypt, Jordan, Morocco, Tunisia and other MENA countries to restore investor confidence, tackle unemployment and foster policy conditions for strong, sustainable and balanced growth.
Governments in the Arab region should quickly step up their efforts to tackle bribery and corruption in order to boost job creation, improve living standards through achieving the MDGs and promote trust in government.
To support Morocco in boosting jobs and investment, this OECD report assesses the country’s business climate, and targets key areas for reform.
This Investment Policy Review examines Morocco’s achievements in developing an open and transparent investment regime and its efforts to reduce restrictions on international investment.
In the context of the economic crisis, reforms can become an effective vehicle for sustained recovery but governments must find the right balance between an effective regulatory and institutional framework and minimising unnecessary red tape. Moreover, governments cannot reset the economy on their own and the contribution of the women and the private sector will be crucial, according to the OECD Secretary-General.
Opening this event in Marrakesh, Angel Gurría underlined that the economic crisis has not spared the MENA region, with a significant economic contraction and a severe impact on the labour markets. According to the Secretary-General, the MENA-OECD Initiative can serve as a model for effective co-operation in building the global economy of the future.
The MENA-OECD Investment Programme seeks to mobilise investment—foreign, regional and domestic—as a driving force for growth, stability and prosperity throughout the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region. This programme is part of the MENA-OECD Initiative on Governance and Investment for Development (www.oecd.org/mena).
This publication highlights key outcomes of the work of the MENA-OECD Investment Programme from 2005-2007, including reforms achieved to date in investment policies and promotion, corporate governance, financial-sector development, and tax policies. It also contains information on the Programme’s activities, highlighting business-climate developments in MENA countries.