OECD Secretary-General welcomes the reform process in Latvia
On Friday 15 September, Prime Minister Māris Kučinskis met with Angel Gurría, Secretary-General of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).
At the meeting, the officials discussed the regular OECD Economic Survey of Latvia.
Māris Kučinskis pointed out that the majority of the recommendations are fully in line with the priority issues on the agenda of the government, such as increasing productivity, reforms in education and health care, and reducing social inequality. Compared with the recommendations of the First Economic Survey in 2015, significant progress has already been made in most areas – the tax reform has been implemented, the governance of public corporations has been improved, the research infrastructure has been consolidated, as well as the improvements have been made to the business environment. The Prime Minister also expressed confidence that the reforms that have already taken place will contribute to improving the situation in the country over the next few years.
The OECD recognizes that, despite the challenges facing the external environment, the economic growth in Latvia has been steady over recent years, thanks to the structural reforms implemented in the previous years. Salary growth has contributed to private consumption. Following the economic crisis in 2008-2009, the convergence process towards the level of most advanced OECD countries has resumed.
It is also emphasized that Latvia is a leader among the OECD countries in the field of reforms.
During the talks, the two parties agreed that the progress has been made, and the reforms, which have already been launched in the country, should be continued. The key OECD recommendations relate to the use of fiscal policies to support the priorities of structural reforms, promote productivity and provide all residents with better economic opportunities, as well as improve access to health services, housing and jobs. The OECD Secretary-General particularly highlighted the importance of the education reform in Latvia.
Latvia became the 35th OECD Member State on 1 July 2016. The agreement on the accession of Latvia to this organization was signed by M. Kučinskis and A. Gurria.
In order to ensure that Latvia becomes a member of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, a reform for more effective monitoring of state-owned capital companies was launched, an institution coordinating capital companies was established and the political influence on them was reduced by creating independent councils.
Photos of the meeting.
Press Secretary to the Prime Minister