Launch of the OECD study: Confronting the Zombies: Policies for Productivity Revival - Wednesday 6 December 2017, 12:00 pm, at Bruegel, in Brussels, Belgium


04/12/2017 -                                                                                                                                                 Livestream at:


Weak productivity growth is a major problem afflicting our societies. It curbs growth in incomes and endangers the sustainability of our social security systems.


A new OECD study, Confronting the Zombies: Policies for Productivity Revival examines an important, but often ignored, source of the slowdown in productivity: the increasing prevalence of weakly productive firms and, among them, “zombie firms” – i.e. firms that would typically exit or be forced to restructure in a competitive market.


These firms divert credit, investment and skills from flowing to more productive and successful firms and contribute to slowing down the diffusion of best practices and new technologies across our economies. The OECD  study shows that reforms of insolvency regimes, banking supervision and taxation could revive aggregate productivity growth by facilitating the restructuring or exit of weak firms. It also explores the complementary role of policies that manage the social costs of worker displacement.


The OECD will present the new study – the final findings of a project on Exit Policies and Productivity Growth, which started in 2015 – during a seminar on Wednesday 6 December, at Bruegel, in Brussels, starting at 12:00 p.m. Speakers will include Giuseppe Nicoletti and Dan Andrews, respectively head and deputy head of the structural policy analysis division of the OECD Economics Dept.; Bruegel Senior Fellow Reinhilde Veugelers; and Non-Resident Fellow Carlos Altomonte.


For further information on the seminar, or to register, go to:


To request an advance copy of Confronting the Zombies: Policies for Productivity Revival, or to arrange interviews, contact Lawrence Speer (+33 1 4524 7970) in the OECD Media Office (+33 1 4524 9700)


Working with over 100 countries, the OECD is a global policy forum that promotes policies to improve the economic and social well-being of people around the world.


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