Governments and taxpayers spent about half a trillion dollars last year supporting the production and consumption of fossil fuels. Removing inefficient subsidies would raise national revenues and reduce greenhouse-gas emissions, according to OECD and IEA analyses.
This Inventory provides reliable and comparable data on support or tax expenditures for fossil fuel production or use in OECD countries. Reforming fossil fuel subsidies can contribute to achieving economic and fiscal objectives, while also tackling environmental problems like climate change.
On the 50th anniversary of the OECD, we examine the unique work the organisation performs in regulating and rationalising governments’ use of export credits in support of exports, jobs, economic growth and national interests more broadly. This work is part of a global post war effort to emphasise multilateral co operation and sound economic policies to promote co operation, efficiency and prosperity rather than destructive competition, controversy and conflict.
OECD export credits work is one of the basic building blocks of the ever growing structure of global trade agreements that aim to maintain open and efficient markets. The objective is to eliminate subsidies and unfair practices in the economic competition that forms the foundation of a healthy and dynamic global economy. The elimination of official financing subsidies in global trade is only a part of the broader trade policy agenda, but it is a vital part, and has been delegated to the OECD by the WTO. Since financing is the life blood of trade flows, specialised OECD housed work allows trade to flow efficiently for aircraft and other capital goods while other trade policy work and litigation continue at the WTO.
The export credits work at the OECD is described in this collection of essays. However it is about much more than the series of agreements described herein. It is more fundamentally about the governments and their people - policy makers and experts - who gather at the OECD to build collectively a system of export credits disciplines that is fair, transparent, adaptable and effective. It is therefore as much about people and ideas as anything else. The export credit secretariat pictured above represents only the latest in a long line of OECD staff committed to facilitate and advise this work.
The OECD’s motto on its 50th anniversary is “Better Policies for Better Lives.” This reminds us that in the end, it is policies that are at the centre of human well being. And export credits work is about promoting these better policies by developing “smart rules” that open markets and maintain a level playing field and by bringing people and governments together to this end.
Government support to agriculture in OECD countries fell to 18% of total farm receipts in 2010, a record low linked to high commodity prices, but has been rising in large emerging economies, according to a new OECD report.
English, , 732kb
Challenges with respect to trade and jobs – and the interface between the two issue areas – remain near the top of policy agendas for OECD members and partner countries around the world. Globalisation has been a critical force driving increased economic integration and structural change, resulting in greater employment opportunities and welfare, but also creating adjustment difficulties including in the labour market. Through its deep
How will emerging economies influence global trade and investment? Journalist Narayan Lakshman (The Hindu, India) moderates this OECD Forum 2011 session featuring EU Trade Commissioner Karel De Gucht, UK trade minister Lord Green, and others.
English, , 151kb
Globalisation, technology and international development are transforming world trade. The OECD Trade Committee will support trade policy makers in sharing the benefits of open trade through analysis, policy advice and close engagement with emerging economies.
Summaries of Meetings of the Working Party on Export Credits and Credit Guarantees.
Trade promotes economic growth, alleviates poverty and helps countries reach their development goals. However, developing countries – in particular the least developed – face difficulties in making trade happen and turning trade into economic growth. The Aid for Trade Initiative – launched at the 2005 World Trade Organisation conference in Hong Kong – aims at helping these countries to take advantage of trade opportunities and to reap the benefits of their integration into the world economy. The Initiative has been a success: it has not only raised awareness among both donors and developing countries about the role of trade in development, but also helped secure increased resources.
Trade for Growth and Poverty Reduction: How Aid for Trade Can Help explains how Aid for Trade can foster economic growth and reduce poverty, and why it is an important instrument for a development strategy that actively supports poverty alleviation. Unlocking this potential requires carefully designed and sequenced trade reforms. While developing countries have many trade-related needs, but financial resources and political capital for reforms are limited, it is an important priority to tackle the most binding constraints to trade expansion. This report describes the diagnostic tools available, evaluates their strengths and weaknesses, and suggests a dynamic framework to guide the sequencing of reform and donor support.
"The ability of the participants to design, negotiate and conclude such a thorough, market-driven agreement in less than a year is remarkable. It is testimony to the power of the multilateral cooperation that continues to drive OECD work 50 years after its creation.", M. Gurría declared.