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OECD and Canada: Celebrating 50 years of co-operation

The OECD allows policymakers to come together to identify best practices that shape our public policies. It allows us to compare and benchmark our performance, and learn from top performers. By participating in the OECD peer review process, we benefit from frank discussion among equals on our accomplishments and shortfalls in a variety of areas, from the economy to development policies. The objective and credible analysis provided by the OECD strengthens these discussions. Overall, Canada’s socio-economic performance is strong compared with the OECD. However, in order to improve further, we need to know where others are doing better and to learn how they are achieving these results.

As one of the 19 founding members of the OECD, Canada has greatly benefited from and contributed to the OECD over the past 50 years. For instance, Canada’s experience with sound fiscal management serves as an example for other OECD countries. Likewise, Canada’s success at maximising educational outcomes for students makes our country a leader in OECD work on education.

Canada’s contributions extend beyond sharing our policy experience. Several prominent Canadians have held leading roles at the OECD. Canadian Donald Johnston was the first non-European to serve as secretary-general. Canadians currently chair several important OECD committees and working parties, including the Economic Development and Review Committee. Canada has hosted many important OECD meetings, including the first-ever ministerial meeting on e-commerce and the launch of the revised Jobs Strategy in 2006. Canada has also played a prominent role in helping the OECD to strengthen its relations with global players.

On the occasion of the OECD’s 50th anniversary, Canada looks forward to playing an active role in shaping its next 50 years. As we go forward, the public policy challenges we face will increase in complexity, number and impact. The OECD can do much to continue to help us obtain better outcomes for all citizens of the world.


©OECD Observer No 284, Q1 2011