The MENA-OECD Initiative on Governance and Competitiveness for Development


The Initiative facilitates co-operation between the OECD and the MENA region to promote policies for sustainable and inclusive growth. It addresses regional needs and development priorities, including the integration of women and youth through jobs and greater participation in policymaking. It also takes into account the region’s diversity by providing targeted support to individual countries. The Initiative builds on the OECD’s work method of policy dialogue, exchange of good practices and capacity building for the implementation of reforms.

Created at the request of MENA countries, the Initiative brings together MENA and OECD governments, the international community, civil society and the private sector. The Initiative is composed of two pillars, the MENA-OECD Governance Programme and the MENA-OECD Competitiveness Programme, and is governed by a steering group providing strategic guidance. 


The Initiative adopts a horizontal approach to high-level dialogue and consensus building with working level technical assistance, analysis and capacity building through specialised policy networks. It deepens its impact through co-operation with regional and international partners and aligns its efforts with other international platforms. The 2016-2020 mandate of the Initiative focuses on:

  • Supporting regional economic integration to reduce economic fragmentation and facilitate countries’ integration into global value chains (GVCs).
  • Fostering shared and inclusive economic growth through policies to support decentralisation, greater investment in infrastructure, economic diversification, productivity and greater inclusion of women and youth.
  • Strengthening the Initiative’s linkages with the wider development agenda through global initiatives such as the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and deepened partnerships with regional and international organisations.
  • Advancing the development of countries in a fragile or conflict situation through the sharing of knowledge, good practices, and support in reform implementation. 

The Initiative covers Algeria, Bahrain, Djibouti, Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Mauritania, Morocco, Oman, Palestinian Authority, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Tunisia, United Arab Emirates and Yemen.



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