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COVID-19 and Southeast Asia


Key Southeast Asia publications

The OECD and Southeast Asia

For over 25 years, the OECD and Southeast Asia have developed an enduring and mutually beneficial relationship. They have been working closely to facilitate policy dialogue, the dissemination of good practices and mutual learning in areas such as investment, education, inclusiveness, sustainable infrastructures, good governance, access to market and fiscal policy.

In 2007, OECD Ministers identified Southeast Asia as a region of strategic priority for the Organisation. In 2014, the OECD Southeast Asia Regional Programme (SEARP) was launched at the OECD Ministerial Council Meeting. The Programme aims to support domestic priorities, policy reforms and regional integration efforts in Southeast Asia.

In 2018, SEARP held its first Ministerial Regional Forum and the Fourth Steering Group Meeting on 8-9 March, in Tokyo, Japan. Under this occassion, Japan and Indonesia handed over their Co-Chairmanship to Korea and Thailand. The OECD recently organised its annual Southeast Asia Regional Forum on 20 May 2021, virtually.

Today, Indonesia is a Key Partner of the Organisation and the Thailand Country Programme was signed on 31 May 2018 by Thailand’s Minister Attached to the Prime Minister’s Office Kobsak Pootrakool and the OECD Secretary-General Ángel Gurría during the 2018 OECD Ministerial Council Meeting in Paris. Other countries in the region benefit from different forms of engagement with the Organisation.

2021 OECD Southeast Asia Regional Forum

 Calendar icon blue 20 May  9:00 - 13:00 CET / 14:00-18:00 ICT

The OECD Southeast Asia Regional Programme, in collaboration with the Government of Thailand, hosted its annual regional Forum focussing on Human Capital Development in Southeast Asia: Fostering Competitiveness to Build Back Better, virtually. 

This 2021 Regional Forum provided a timely opportunity for representatives and policy-makers from Southeast Asia and their OECD peers to rethink policy options for enhancing human capital development to strengthen resilience and competitiveness in the region. Representatives emphasised on the transformative impact of digitalisation on education and skills in order to build back better and ensure resilient recovery. Participants also discussed policy measures to support the reform on the education system in order to close the learning gap among children and youth and to improve skills of adults to adapt to the changing working environment.

SEA Regional Programme activities

Active with Southeast Asia Brochure

Towards a Skills Strategy for Southeast Asia