Business at OECD was established in 1962, one year after the formal establishment of the OECD as the official business arm of OECD, making it an integral part of the OECD ‘ecosystem’.
For almost 60 years, we have now been a trusted partner of the organization, closely responding to the wide range of OECD activities related to economic development and governance, environment, education, agriculture, technology, taxation and various other related areas.
The OECD provides data and analysis to inform policymaking and policy reform and constitutes an influential source of advice to governments on the management of their national economies as well as to the global community on the maintenance of global economic governance. In this context, the OECD is also cooperating with other international organizations including IMF, G20, the United Nations, WTO and WHO.
Some of the most well-known ventures of the OECD are the Program for International Student Assessment (PISA), providing governments with information on how to equip students with the relevant skills for their working life and exerting peer pressure on policy makers to spur education reform, and the G20/OECD work on Base Erosion and Profit Shifting (BEPS), which is currently reforming the international tax system.
While the OECD currently comprises 36 countries, it maintains ties beyond its membership, by pursuing regional approaches, hosting country programs and organizing the global forum. Through its engagement with members and key partners (Brazil, China, India, Indonesia and South Africa), the OECD covers 80% of world trade and investment. [*Source]
The OECD is thus affecting business all around the world. It has established more than 450 international standards, including conventions, recommendations, decisions and declarations, and more than 250 legal instruments, shaping the way business is operating globally. [*Source]
Through its Anti-Bribery Convention and the related 2009 Recommendation, the OECD contributes to the development of a more level playing field for business. The OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises are the most comprehensive government-backed international standard on responsible business conduct. The G20/OECD Principles of Corporate Governance set out a framework for good practice that has become a model around the world by governments and regulatory authorities.
Business at OECD is actively shaping these developments. In line with our mission to support the design of well-informed policies, we promote open markets, competitive economies and inclusive private sector led growth. As the ‘voice of business‘ at the OECD, we formulate evidence-based policy positions, engage with government officials and present business perspectives and expertise at high-level OECD meetings, including at the committee or expert group and Ministerial level.
Business at OECD also participates in the B20 process, offering advice to the rotating G20 presidencies, by contributing to the taskforces and sharing business positions in high-level G20 meetings.
Business at OECD draws on an extensive network of business experts from leading business and employers organizations in both OECD and non-OECD countries as well as supranational sectoral organizations, which provide sector specific insights to the Business at OECD work. We thus represent over 7 million companies of all sizes and from a variety of sectors and industries.
To coordinate business inputs to the OECD process, we convene almost 30 policy groups, which work together closely with their respective OECD Committees. This allows us to cover all major OECD activities relevant to business including corporate governance and bodies, responsible business conduct and anti-corruption; development and emerging economies; economic policy, competition, and regulation; employment, skills, and education; environment; health; innovation and digital economy; taxation and trade and investment. These policy groups meet several times a year to streamline engagement strategies and define joint positions on emerging policy issues.
IFAC has been a trusted associate expert, contributing to our work since 2013, providing high-quality input to key activities, including in the areas of Corporate Governance, Public Governance, Anti-Corruption and Responsible Business Conduct. In 2018, IFAC and Business at OECD jointly released the survey ‘Regulatory Divergence: Costs, Risks, Impacts: An International Financial Sector Study’, which revealed that fragmentation in global financial regulation is costing the world economy more than USD $780 billion annually.
Thanks to the dedicated contribution from our members, Business at OECD has been shaping policy making for more than a half a century. We are committed to continue promoting competitive economies and better business in order to support the OECD in achieving its goal of designing ‘better policies for better lives’.