The Marshall plan, crucial to rebuilding Europe after World War II, led to the creation of the OECD, which ultimately showed that economic cooperation and a resolute defense of democracies are fundamental to prosperity.
We condemn the Russian invasion of Ukraine, and our thoughts are with the Ukrainian people. The mission of the OECD as a pathfinder and promoter of policies that preserve peace, democracy, rule of law, and individual liberties is more important than ever. Our business advocacy will be relentless to uphold these principles and support the OECD as we face challenging times.
Hanni Rosenbaum, Executive Director, and Ali Karami-Ruiz, Senior Director, Strategic Engagement and Communications
Invitation: Business at OECD / IOE Virtual Discussion on the postponed WTO Ministerial
Next week, we host a joint virtual discussion alongside the International Organization of Employers to follow up on the postponed WTO Ministerial: Trade policy to recover and to achieve employment goals and greater resilience. This digital gathering will provide participants with an update on the WTO agenda, highlight key issues related to trade, employment, and sustainability, and discuss the WTO’s role in the response to the pandemic. We are pleased to confirm that WTO Deputy Director-General Angela Ellard will join the discussion along with senior business speakers, including IOE Secretary-General Roberto Suarez, our Executive Director Hanni Rosenbaum, our Trade Committee Chair Pat Ivory, and USCIB CEO and President Peter Robinson.
As part of this discussion, we will emphasize our key considerations on how the OECD should contribute to WTO reform. As we are co-hosting this event in cooperation with the IOE and the recently launched Business Coalition for trade, employment, and sustainability, we encourage interested business members to join us by registering below.
Last week, our Employment Committee led by Renate Hornung-Draus met to exchange on policy challenges and opportunities employers face in the labor field. Over 30 representatives from our national member organizations and their affiliated companies identified labor shortages as a major issue that should be featured more prominently in the OECD agenda.
Our Committee decided to launch a forthcoming campaign that will outline how employers and companies have responded to this issue, and further explore tangible ways in which the OECD can help.
Business highlights ways forward for OECD work on trade and environment
Earlier this week, our Trade Committee Chair Pat Ivory led a large private sector delegation to the virtual meeting of the OECD Joint Working Party on Trade and Environment.As the session discussed potential future OECD work in this area - including on carbon markets, border adjustments, circular economy, and the liberalization of environmental trade - we highlighted our recent trade priorities underlining the need for OECD to promote the development, deployment, and diffusion of environmentally–friendly goods and services through evidence–based and coherent policy advice.
Last week, our Policy Manager Rokas Morkūnas moderated an OECD panel discussion on Preparing Generation Z for the jobs of today and tomorrow, bringing together young people, local leaders and associations, and providers from across Europe and America to explore what cities are doing to ensure young people can excel in local labor markets.
This event, organized as part of the OECD Local Skills Week on Future-Proofing Local Skills Systems, allowed participants to explore the private sector initiatives on youth and identify ways for private partnerships to foster youth inclusion in the labor market. The outcomes of the discussions will feed into the next steps in our own Business for Youth Campaign.
Upcoming: Joint webinar on the OECD’s Debt Transparency Initiative
Next week, our Finance Committee will host a joint webinar with the OECD on its Debt Transparency Initiative, which aims to provide the OECD with an opportunity to inform our interested members why it matters to business.
With financial institutions as the main potential participants, the OECD Debt Transparency Initiative seeks to operationalize the International Institute of Finance's Voluntary Principles for Debt Transparency by collecting, analyzing, and reporting on relevant public sector debt data from low-income countries. This will allow any interested stakeholders to benefit from a better understanding of the public sector debt levels and conditions of these vulnerable countries. It also aims to provide timely, aggregated data on lending, pricing, and other terms that can help better assess levels of sovereign indebtedness in countries that may be more fragile to changes in interest rates, and exogenous shocks that can destabilize countries.
Engaging on Artificial Intelligence
in work, innovation, productivity, and skills
This week, with support from the German Federal Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs, the OECD hosts its second International Conference on AI in Work, Innovation, Productivity, and Skills in which we will participate. The Conference advances cross-cutting, multistakeholder implementation of the OECD AI Principles, and features our business experts, who will outline how business is working to advance implementation of trustworthy AI. At the conference, OECD is also launching its AI Systems Classification framework. For more information, please visit this page.
Continuing engagementwith the OECD to address the tax challenges of the digitalization of the economy
Last week, we submitted comments to the OECD’s Pillar One revenues sourcing and nexus consultation document in which we called for practicality and administrability, and emphasized the need for tax certainty. We will continue to work with our members in submitting comments to the next round of OECD’s Pillar One consultation, tax base, due on March 4, 2022.
We also submitted a letter to the OECD Task Force on the Digital Economy, outlining key principles that our members would like to see in the upcoming Pillar One draft rules. We look forward to facilitating more engagement between our members and the OECD on Pillars One and Two through both formal public consultation and our established working relationships.
Exclusive conversation with OECD Leadership on the OECD MNE Guidelines stocktaking
Today, we host an informal debrief with the Head of the OECD Responsible Business Conduct Centre Allan Jorgensen on the stocktaking of the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises. Further to our close engagement in the process last year, Mr. Jorgensen will provide an outline of the key takeaways from the stocktaking exercise and inform Committee members about the way ahead.
Our Investment and Responsible Business Conduct Committee has been closely involved in the stocktaking process, underling business concerns about the proliferation of widely diverging mandatory regional and national responsible business conduct legislation and stressing that, instead of a complex update of the instrument, we believe that there is substantial unused potential linked to the implementation and institutions supporting the Guidelines. To read the full commentary, click here.
USCIB Supports Strengthening Trade, Investment, Economic Ties in Indo-Pacific
USCIB was among a dozen other trade associations in submitting a letter to the Biden Administration welcoming the launch of the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework (IPEF) initiative as part of the government’s Indo-Pacific strategy.
Electricity and gas prices threaten to crush the economy
The BDI published a survey on energy costs in industrial SMEs. The rapid rise in prices is increasingly affecting production in Germany. Even medium-sized companies that are loyal to their location would have to think about relocating abroad, according to BDI President Siegfried Russwurm.