Publications


  • 3-November-2010

    English

    Tax Policy Reform and Economic Growth

    In the wake of the recent financial and economic crisis, many OECD countries face the challenge of restoring public finances while still supporting growth. This report investigates how tax structures can best be designed to support GDP per capita growth.  

    The analysis suggests a tax and economic growth ranking order according to which corporate taxes are the most harmful type of tax for economic growth, followed by personal income taxes and then consumption taxes, with recurrent taxes on immovable property being the least harmful tax. Growth-oriented tax reform measures include tax base broadening and a reduction in the top marginal personal income tax rates. Some degree of support for R&D through the tax system may help to increase private spending on innovation. 

    But implementing pro-growth tax reforms may not be easy. This report identifies those public and political economy tax reform strategies that will allow policy makers to reconcile differing tax policy objectives and overcome obstacles to reform. It stresses that with clear vision, strong leadership and solid tax policy analysis, growth-oriented tax reform can indeed be realised.

  • 3-November-2010

    English

    High-Growth Enterprises - What Governments Can Do to Make a Difference

    The spectacular success of several well-known new ventures in technological fields, which in little more than a decade have jumped from the state of start-ups to that of top international businesses, has pointed to innovation as a key factor in the high growth of firms.  These high-growth enterprises often drive job creation and innovation, so policy makers are increasingly making such companies a key focus. Specifically, how can government policy foster the creation of more high-growth enterprises; what are the growth factors, and how can they be leveraged; what are the appropriate ways to provide such support?

    To help answer these questions, this report presents findings from two new research studies: (1) reports from 15 countries (Australia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Czech Republic, Finland, France, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Switzerland and Tunisia) that provide interesting insights into the operations of and challenges faced by high-growth enterprises; (2) a policy survey by the OECD Working Party on SMEs and Entrepreneurship, which reviewed more than 340 programmes that policy makers in 24 countries have put in place to support the growth of enterprises. 

    Some of this report’s findings may surprise: any firm can be a growth company; growth is almost always a temporary phase; high-growth small firms are funded mostly by debt, not equity. These and many more insights are summarised and analysed, providing policy makers with ideas on how to power growth at the firm level.

  • 29-October-2010

    English

    Breaking Out of Policy Silos - Doing More with Less

    In the context of the economic recovery and public budget cuts, policy silos and fragmented short-term policy interventions have become luxuries that our economies can no longer afford. Government intervenes in a myriad of ways at the local level, and rarely are these interventions co-ordinated effectively. Most of us are familiar with policy “silos”. Such divisions are often taken for granted, blamed on historical working relationships (“it has always been like that”) and organisational cultures (“they don’t work like we do”).  However these divisions come at a cost. The issues and challenges facing local communities are often complex, and require a holistic approach to be resolved. This book provides concrete advice to policy makers at both national and local levels on how to better align policies, reduce duplication and waste, and “do more with less”. It is based on comparative analysis of 11 countries in Australisia, Europe and North America and combines rankings on where countries stand in terms of the integration of employment, skills and economic development policies, with concrete examples of successful policy integration on the ground.

  • 28-October-2010

    English

    Choosing a Broad Base - Low Rate Approach to Taxation

    Many countries will likely face the need to increase tax revenues, as part of fiscal consolidation, during the next few years. But how is this best done? And what are the considerations when choosing between raising tax rates and broadening the tax base by scaling back or abolishing targeted tax provisions (such as allowances, exemptions and preferential rates)? This report aims to answer such questions by taking a close look at the economic and political factors that influence governments’ tax decisions. 

    Although many countries have broadened their tax bases over the past 30 years, targeted tax provisions, notably tax expenditures, continue to be significant.  Like public expenditure, targeted tax reliefs mean that (other) tax rates need to be higher in order to finance these reliefs. This report therefore discusses whether such tax provisions continue to be worthwhile. It includes an annex covering country-specific revenue forgone estimates of tax expenditures for selected OECD countries.  

    This report also identifies political factors, including the lobbying of influential interest groups, as the main obstacles to base-broadening reforms, and it considers how reforms can be best packaged and presented to overcome such obstacles.

  • 18-October-2010

    English

    Citrus Fruits

    This publication provides comments and illustrations of standards in force regarding the classification, presentation and marking of citrus fruit in international trade under the Scheme for the Application of International Standards for Fruit and Vegetables set up by OECD in 1962. It is a valuable tool for both the Inspection Authorities and professional bodies responsible for the application of standards or interested in trade in citrus fruit. The book includes a USB key with the electronic version of the publication.

     

  • 13-October-2010

    English

    Taxation, Innovation and the Environment

    Solving the world’s environmental problems could take a significant toll on economic growth if only today’s technologies are available. We know that  innovation – the creation and adoption of new cleaner technologies and know-how – provides a means to achieve local and global environmental goals at significantly lower costs. Innovation is also a major driver of economic growth.  

    OECD governments are increasingly using environmentally related taxes because they are typically one of the most effective policy tools available. Exploring the relationship between environmentally related taxation and innovation is critical to understanding the full impacts of this policy instrument as well as one potential facet of “green growth.” By putting a price on pollution, do environmentally related taxes spur innovation? What types of innovation result? Does the design of the tax play a critical role? What is the effect of this innovation? 

    In analysing these questions, this report draws on case studies that cover Japan, Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, Israel and others. It covers a wide set of environmental issues and technologies, as well as the economic and policy contexts. The research methods range from econometric analysis to interviews with business owners and executives. The report also explores the use of environmentally related taxes in OECD countries and outlines considerations for policymakers when implementing these taxes. 

    Green growth policies can stimulate economic growth while preventing environmental degradation, biodiversity loss and unsustainable natural resource use. The results from this publication will contribute to the Green Growth Strategy being developed by the OECD as a practical policy package for governments to harness the potential of greener growth.  

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  • 8-October-2010

    English

    Drugs and Driving - Detection and Deterrence

    Driving while impaired by drugs – whether licit or illicit – has emerged as an important road safety issue. This report provides a state-of-the-art review of the role and impact of drugs in road accident risk. It reviews the legislation, deterrence and roadside detection practices in member countries as well as preventative measures to combat drug use while driving. It provides recommendations on strategies to adopt in addressing this issue, with a view to contributing to a safe system approach and saving further lives on the roads.

  • 7-October-2010

    English

    Improving Value in Health Care - Measuring Quality

    Are breast cancer survival rates higher in the United States than in the United Kingdom and France? Are a patient's chances of dying within 30 days after admission to a hospital with a heart attack lower in Canada than in Korea? Are surgeons in some countries more likely to leave “foreign bodies” behind after operations or make accidental punctures or lacerations rates when performing surgery? The need for answers to these kinds of questions and the value of measuring the quality of health care are among the issues addressed in this publication. 

    Many health policies depend on our ability to measure the quality of care accurately. Governments want to increase “patient-centeredness”, improve co-ordination of care, and pay providers of high-quality care more than those who underperform. However, measuring the quality of health care is challenging. The OECD’s Health Care Quality Indicator project has overcome some of the problems, though many remain. If policy makers are serious about improving the body of evidence on the quality of care, they need to improve their health information systems.  This publication describes what  international comparable quality measures  are currently available and how  to link these measures to quality policies such as accreditation, practice  guidelines, pay-for-performance, national safety programmes and quality reporting.

  • 7-October-2010

    English

    Energy Policies of IEA Countries: Czech Republic 2010

    The International Energy Agency's 2010 review of the Czech Republic's energy policies and programmes. It analyses the energy challenges facing the Czech Republic and provides sectoral critiques and recommendations for further policy improvements. It is intended to help guide the country towards a more secure and sustainable energy future.

    It finds that the Czech Republic, rich in coal resources, is the third-largest electricity exporter in the European Union. The energy sector plays an important role for the country’s economy and for the regional energy security. Since the last IEA in-depth review in 2005, the Czech Republic has strengthened its energy policy, further liberalised its electricity and gas markets and made laudable efforts to enhance oil and gas security.

    The Czech government has a unique opportunity to develop coherent and balanced energy and climate strategies as it currently updates its policy documents. The draft State Energy Concept concentrates on energy security and on maintaining the Czech Republic as a net electricity exporter, through a diversified energy mix and a maximised use of indigenous resources, comprising coal, uranium and renewable energy.

    While the focus on energy security is praiseworthy, energy policy could be further improved. Energy policy should be better integrated with climate change considerations. At the same time, economic efficiency should be another key pillar of energy policy. To improve its energy security while reducing greenhouse gas emissions and enhancing economic development, the Czech Republic could take measures to: improve energy efficiency and broaden demand-side measures; focus on low-carbon technologies; integrate electricity and natural gas markets regionally; and optimise needed new infrastructure.

  • 5-October-2010

    English

    Occupational Radiological Protection Principles and Criteria for Designing New Nuclear Power Plants

    Global demand for electricity continues to grow and numerous new nuclear power plants (NPPs) are being planned or constructed in NEA member countries. Most of these new NPPs will be of the third generation, and will be designed for as long as 80 years of operation. The successful design, construction and operation of these plants will depend broadly on appropriately implementing the lessons from experience accumulated to date.

    This case study introduces a policy and technical framework that may be used when formulating technical assistance and guidance for senior managers of NPPs, designers, manufacturers, contractors and authorities responsible for regulating occupational radiation exposure. It is aimed in particular at assisting design and license assessments of new NPPs. Although not targeting the needs of countries introducing nuclear power for the first time, this case study can also provide valuable input on occupational radiological protection issues for the implementation of new nuclear energy programmes.

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