Where to get the best bang for the buck in the United Kingdom? Industrial strategy, investment and lagging regions

by Rafal Kierzenkowski, Head of UK Desk, Peter Gal, Economist, Productivity Workstream, and Gabor Fulop, Analyst at the UK Desk, OECD Economics Department The United Kingdom has large regional disparities in productivity which contribute to differences in living standards across the country, while its less productive regions also hold back overall economic performance (OECD, 2017). High … More Where to get the best bang for the buck in the United Kingdom? Industrial strategy, investment and lagging regions

How to make Belgian firms more productive

by Manav Frohde, Economist, OECD Economics Department A combination of market-based policies and a redistributive welfare state have helped Belgium achieved among the highest living standards in the OECD. While the economy remains highly productive, productivity growth has slowed  over the past two decades (Figure 1 & 2). Reinvigorating productivity growth will be necessary to … More How to make Belgian firms more productive

Four Challenges of Inclusive Growth from the OECD’s chief economist

by Catherine L. Mann, Chief Economist and Head of the Economics Department, OECD The challenge of measuring inclusiveness. A standard metric for measuring inequality is the Gini coefficient, which measures income distribution within an economy. But there are many other measures, such as distribution of income deciles, distribution of wealth, distributions of these by regions … More Four Challenges of Inclusive Growth from the OECD’s chief economist

Lifting New Zealand’s game on productivity

by Andrew Barker, New Zealand Desk, OECD Economics Department Productivity growth will be the main driver of global economic growth and prosperity over the coming decades. For New Zealand, this represents both a challenge and an opportunity, as NZ productivity is below that of leading OECD countries (Figure 1). This problem is not new, and … More Lifting New Zealand’s game on productivity

Japan needs policies to boost productivity for inclusive growth

by Randall Jones, Head of Japan Desk, OECD Economics Department Labour productivity in Japan is about a quarter below the average of the top half of OECD countries (Figure 1), which is surprising given Japan’s outstanding performance in education and skills and high level of R&D spending. As in other countries, the labour productivity gap … More Japan needs policies to boost productivity for inclusive growth

Reducing poverty durably is a key challenge in Spain

By Yosuke Jin, Spain Desk, Country Studies Branch, OECD Economics Department Poverty has risen in Spain in the wake of the crisis (Figure 1), mainly due to lack of quality jobs that provide enough hours of paid work to support decent incomes (OECD, 2017). The risk of poverty is concentrated on jobless households and households … More Reducing poverty durably is a key challenge in Spain

Structural reforms to revive growth in Europe: necessary but not sufficient

By Aida Caldera Sánchez, European Union Desk, and Nicolas Ruiz, Structural Surveillance Division, OECD Economics Department After many years characterised by output losses or quasi-stagnation, steadier growth appears to be setting in across European economies. Recent data point to an upturn in growth, the euro-area unemployment rate has finally fallen below 10%, and private-sector confidence … More Structural reforms to revive growth in Europe: necessary but not sufficient

The Walking Dead: Zombie Firms Stifle Economic Recovery Prospects

By: Müge Adalet McGowan, Dan Andrews and Valentine Millot – Structural Policy Analysis Division, Economics Department, OECD. With the global economy stuck in a low growth trap, it is crucial to understand the factors behind the weak recovery in potential output growth, and particularly the barriers to productivity growth. New research shows that this dynamic … More The Walking Dead: Zombie Firms Stifle Economic Recovery Prospects

Mexico’s reforms are paying off, but there is much left to do

By Sean Dougherty, Mabel Gabriel, Patrick Lenain, and Julien Reynaud, OECD Economics Department The overall economic and social situation has improved in recent years, but important challenges remain, such as high levels of poverty, extensive informality, low female participation rates, insufficient educational achievement, financial exclusion, weak rule of law, and persistent levels of corruption and … More Mexico’s reforms are paying off, but there is much left to do

Coping with Creative Destruction: Reducing the Costs of Firm Exit

By  Dan Andrews, Head of Productivity Workstream, OECD Economics Department Creative destruction, the process through which a market economy replaces failing firms with successful ones, is a key driver of productivity growth. Reversing the current slowdown in productivity growth will therefore partly depend on structural reforms to recharge the engine of creative destruction. This will … More Coping with Creative Destruction: Reducing the Costs of Firm Exit