The Nuclear Energy Agency is an intergovernmental agency that is organized under the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development . Originally formed on 1 February 1958 with the name European Nuclear Energy Agency ; the United States participated as an Associate Member), the name was changed on 20 April 1972 to its current name after Japan became a member.The mission of the NEA is to "assist its member countries in maintaining and further developing, through international co-operation, the scientific, technological and legal bases required for the safe, environmentally friendly and economical use of nuclear energy for peaceful purposes." Wikipedia.
News Article | November 16, 2016
The total number of deaths caused by terrorism decreased by 10% to 29,376 in 2015, according to the Global Terrorism Index 2016, reversing a four-year upward trend. The military interventions against ISIL and Boko Haram have resulted in a 32% reduction in deaths in Iraq and Nigeria, which contributed to an overall reduction in the global figure. However, while ISIL and Boko Haram were weakened at home, these organisations spread to other countries, increasing the impact of terrorism in the rest of the world and contributing to a 6% deterioration in this year's overall GTI score. The yearly report, developed by the Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP) based on the Global Terrorism Database by the National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism (START) as well as other sources, provides the most comprehensive resource on global terrorist trends. It finds that at the global level, the number of countries registering their highest number of deaths in 2015 rose to 23, six more than the previous high of 17. Countries experiencing very significant deteriorations in their GTI score include France, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Tunisia. This led to large changes in rank from the previous year and accounted for the overall deterioration in the global GTI score as these falls outweighed the improvements in Nigeria and Iraq. ISIL and its affiliates more than doubled the number of countries in which they were active jumping from 13 in 2014 to 28 countries in 2015, including many in Europe. This resulted in a record number of countries experiencing their highest levels of terrorism in any year in the past 16 years. Boko Haram's extension into neighbouring countries Niger, Cameroon and Chad increased the number of people killed through terrorism in these three countries by 157%. This led to Cameroon and Niger rising to 13th and 16th respectively in the GTI. Steve Killelea, Executive Chairman of IEP, said, "This year's GTI report highlights the most complex set of dynamics in global terrorism in the last 16 years. While on the one hand the reduction in deaths is positive, the continued intensification of terrorism in some countries and its spread to new ones is a cause for serious concern and underscores the fluid nature of modern terrorist activity. The attacks in the heartland of western democracies underscore the need for fast paced and tailored responses to the evolution of these organisations." In OECD countries, ISIL's transnational tactics in combination with lone actor attacks inspired by the group contributed towards a 650% increase in the number of fatalities. 21 of the 34 OECD countries experienced at least one attack, with the majority of deaths occurring in Turkey and France. Denmark, France, Germany, Sweden and Turkey all recorded the most deaths from terrorism in a single year since 2000. More than half of the 577 deaths were in connection to ISIL, whose attacks in Paris, Brussels and Ankara were amongst the most devastating in the history of these countries. Steve Killelea commented, "ISIL foreign fighters who have gone to Syria generally have high levels of education but low incomes, with many fighters joining in part due to a feeling of exclusion in their home countries. Understanding the drivers of terrorism is crucial if we are to develop counter-terrorism strategies that help combat radicalisation. Military operations are clearly contributing towards restraining ISIL in Iraq, but the continued appeal of the organisation, evident in the ISIL-inspired attacks in Europe, demonstrates the limitations of a purely military approach." Within OECD countries, the report finds that socio-economic factors such as youth unemployment, levels of criminality, access to weapons and distrust in the electoral process are the most statistically significant factors correlating with terrorism. In developing countries, a history of conflict, levels of corruption and group-based inequalities are most significantly correlated to terrorist activity. The global economic impact of terrorism reached US$89.6 billion in 2015: Iraq suffered the highest economic impact from terrorism, reaching 17% of its GDP in 2015. The five countries with the highest total impact from terrorism are Iraq, Afghanistan, Nigeria, Pakistan and Syria. These five countries accounted for 72% of all deaths from terrorism in 2015. Operating within these countries are the four deadliest terrorist groups that are responsible for 74% of all deaths from terrorism: ISIL, Boko Haram, the Taliban and al-Qa'ida. ISIL surpassed Boko Haram as the deadliest terrorist group in 2015 through attacks in 252 different cities that were responsible for 6,141 deaths. The full GTI report and interactive map are available at: www.visionofhumanity.org
News Article | December 6, 2016
NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--To improve access, drive growth and implement successful measurement in education systems globally, Sunny Varkey, Founder and Group Chairman of GEMS Education, is working with the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) to support the launch of a new approach to improving education assessment and strategies in low- and middle-income countries. The new assessment program, PISA (Programme for International Student Assessment) for Development, or PISA-D, was developed by the OECD and its partners to enable greater PISA participation by low-income and middle-income countries in support of the United Nation’s Education 2030 Project. PISA is an international survey occurring every three years, which evaluates education systems worldwide by testing 15-year-old students in science, reading and mathematics. Eight countries are participating in the project, including Cambodia, Ecuador, Guatemala, Honduras, Panama, Paraguay, Senegal and Zambia. Though this work, Mr. Varkey serves as an expert advisor to the OECD and The Education 2030 Project, a multi-year collaboration of the world's leading countries to advance the development of modern education systems. With the support of Mr. Varkey and GEMS Education, PISA-D plays a key role in achieving the project’s education goals to instill in students the values and skills necessary to be successful in the world by 2030. Mr. Varkey is also donating Windows 1:1 devices to six of the eight countries to enable researchers to test students’ skills at home using a Windows-based application. “Global citizenship is an integral component of the curriculums we develop at GEMS Education, allowing our students develop a better understanding of global development issues and the impact they can have in our world,” said Mr. Varkey. “I’m proud to work alongside the OECD, as this work supports our mission to improve access to quality education for all – and that for every child enrolled at a GEMS school, we impact the lives of 100 underprivileged children in our world.” Implemented over 48 months, results from PISA-D will contribute to the OECD’s support for the achievement of the UN’s sustainable development goals (SDG) for education that focus on access, quality and equity in the classroom by engaging more countries globally about adequate learning opportunities. The most recently published results are from the 2012 PISA assessment, and on Dec. 6, 2016, the results from PISA's 2015 round of testing in 72 countries and economies will be released. For the 2018 assessment, the first round of testing will take place from the end of this year through March 2017. Mr. Varkey is also the founder of the Varkey Foundation, a non-profit organization that builds new classrooms and centers of learning, addresses global teaching capacity and seeds excellence and innovation in the next generation of educators. Along with GEMS Education, Mr. Varkey partners with organizations and international agencies that share a commitment to promoting access to quality education for children across the globe. Other supporting partners for the PISA-D project include the participating countries and international contractors, a number of development agencies, including Positivo BGH, as well as support from the World Bank, UNESCO and UNICEF. “We are facing a global challenge to define education indicators at all school levels, and the PISA-D project is addressing this issue head on,” said Denise Gallucci, Chief Executive Officer, GEMS Education – Americas. “As Mr. Varkey, along with GEMS, believes in the power of education to reduce poverty, prejudice and conflict around the world, his support for the OECD’s work is a key growth component in achieving a collaborative mission to improve the quality of learning communities, especially in developing countries.” With schools across 19 countries including the United States, Dubai, Singapore and Switzerland, GEMS Education is a world leader in cutting-edge education and empowers students through rich learning experiences and the purposeful use of technology to prepare them to be successful life-long learners in an ever-changing global society. Founded in 1959, GEMS Education is the world’s leading education company and through its thought-leadership and network of world-renowned experts, GEMS continues to be at the forefront of PK-12 educational innovation. GEMS has a global network of award-winning international schools spanning four continents, educating more than 250,000 students from 115 countries, and employing 20,000 education professionals. With countless opportunities for interactive studies with their peers around the world, GEMS students expand their knowledge and broaden their experiences with other cultures. This new work with OECD will leverage global interactions at a scale and pace. About The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) The OECD provides a setting where governments compare policy experience, seek answers to common problems, identify good practices and co-ordinate domestic and international policies. It brings together countries committed to democracy and the market economy from around the world to: In today’s globalised economy education is a major driving force for growth and development. The OECD Directorate for Education and Skills focuses on current key challenges facing education systems including how to improve the quality of teachers, teaching and learning in order to provide the knowledge and skills needed in the 21st century.
News Article | January 29, 2016
When Google reached a £130m settlement with the British taxman last week, George Osborne described the deal as a “major success”. But the chancellor and the search giant have been on the back foot ever since, accused of striking a “sweetheart deal” that might have short-changed taxpayers and has drawn the close attention of Brussels. Should Osborne have hailed Google’s tax deal? Did he misjudge how it would be received? The chancellor claimed Google’s settlement was thanks to his diverted profits tax (DPT), which was introduced last year to target multinationals artificially routing profits overseas. This was a mistake. The search group’s settlement with HMRC – £117m in back taxes and £13m in interest – related to a period from 2005 to 2015, during which Osborne’s new tax only applied for six months. Drawing a link with DPT was especially unwise because Osborne had previously promised the new measure would force technology companies to unwind their complex tax structures which “abuse the trust of the British people”. As a consequence, DPT was dubbed “the Google tax”. In fact, the Google settlement showed HMRC – even with its new DPT powers – was not going to put a stop to the California-based company’s aggressive tax planning. The group’s £4.6bn of UK sales would continue to be routed through Ireland. Are global businesses allowed to negotiate their tax bill? Sorting out where in the world multinationals make their taxable profits is fiendishly complex. Billions of pounds of cross border transactions within the same group can throw up confusion about where the true economic activity has taken place. Adding to the complexity, big businesses also try to unlock huge tax savings by arranging their internal, cross-border dealings in a way that pushes tax rules to the limit. This leads to disputes with tax authorities that often drag on for years. The disputes are supposed to be settled in an administrative manner, without grubby horse-trading. But with the outcome of case often turning on judgment and interpretation – without public scrutiny – suspicions have grown that the process has become infected with political trade-offs. What was HMRC’s dispute with Google about? Google insists its £4.6bn of sales to UK advertisers are conducted by some of its 5,000-strong workforce in Dublin. That being so, any resulting profits ought to be none of HMRC’s business – in tax jargon, the Irish business does not have a “permanent establishment” in the UK. Google and HMRC have told parliament that this structure has been scrutinised very closely. In particular, tax inspectors have tested whether, in law, Google UK is acting as a front for the business activities of its sister company in Ireland. Similar questions have been raised by tax officials in France and elsewhere. HMRC, however, now appears to be among the most relaxed tax authorities when it comes to Google’s tax structure. Last week’s tax settlement confirmed that HMRC accepts Google’s claims that its UK staff only play a supporting role to Google’s main European operation in Dublin. Britain’s tax rulebook now runs to 17,000 pages, and has got fatter even after George Osborne became chancellor in 2010, despite his promise to slim it down by setting up a new Office for Tax Simplification. But the test for whether Google’s Irish operations should pay tax in the UK is largely determined by Britain’s tax treaty with Ireland. That treaty, in turn, closely follows a template provided by the Organisation for Economic Development and Co-operation (OECD), a club for the world’s biggest economies. The OECD admits the tax rules are now so abused by multinationals – particularly digital firms like Google – that they are close to breaking point. Using the most conservative assumptions, the OECD believes big business is shifting profits and eroding the tax receipts of economies around the world at a cost of £65bn-£160bn a year – equivalent to between 4% and 10% of global corporation tax revenues. Why is Google paying tax arrears? Did it get behind with its accounting? Tax audits for multinational companies can involve investigations, claims and counter-claims, as well as a long appeals process – all behind closed doors. They take years to settle. That creates a potential problem, particularly for stock-market listed groups that are required to regularly update their shareholders on how they are performing. The solution accounting experts have come up with is for groups to set aside sums of money as provisions against potentially big bills for back taxes. The accounts of big multinationals frequently disclose in the small print large provisions relating to tax settlements. Could Google have paid more tax in the UK if it had a more conventional corporate structure? Playing the “what if” game can be red herring when you have limited information. We know that between 2005 and 2013, Google make sales of more than £17bn from UK customers. The accounts of Google UK would look very different If that income had been booked in the accounts of Google UK – but they would also show a huge leap in the British company’s outgoings. In particular, Google UK would have paid a huge bill to other Google businesses for the rights to use the brand and software technology that has for years been developed in California. How much in profit would remain available for HMRC to tax? It is impossible to say. What we do know, however, is that between 2005 and 2013, under Google’s existing tax structure, its UK business paid just £52m. How important is it for countries to try to do favourable tax deals with multinationals? There is growing acknowledgement that countries with sluggish growth and large budget deficits aresetting aggressive tax policies which they hope will persuade multinationals to relocate to their shores. Last year one of Europe’s top tax lawyers, Philip Baker QC, put it plainly. “I don’t think in the last 20 years or so one can say that governments have driven corporation tax policy,” he said. “It’s the large companies that have driven the direction of corporate tax policy.” Sir Marin Sorrell, chief executive of advertising group WPP, has also described corporation tax payments as “a question of judgment”. This week Rupert Murdoch said Google’s UK tax payments were “token amounts for PR purposes”. Would the government really have had no part in this? While it seems improbable that Osborne actively intervened in a particular company’s tax audit, the tone HMRC takes with big business is certainly set by government. And about 10 years ago, the tone began to change quite dramatically, with companies being treated more as collaborative partners and less as incorrigible tax avoiders. Who is leading efforts to tackle multinationals and create tougher international tax laws? Last year an unprecedented agreement was reached on how to reform the world’s corporation tax system: 60 countries representing 90% of the world’s economy agreed to a detail package of reforms, drawn up by the OECD, which they promised would curb the worst excesses of tax avoidance by multinationals. The plan took two years to hammer out and is being slowly implemented around the world, with some countries moving faster than others. While the reforms have yet to bite, so far there are few signs that the markets expect big companies such as Google to pay more tax. How effective is the EU in tackling the tax arrangements of multinationals? The EU has no jurisdiction over corporate income tax. The tax rules for cross border trade in Europe are governed by a web of bilateral treaties between countries. They are all similar – though not identical – and follow a template set out by the OECD. The European commission is pushing for deeper coordination of corporate tax, but faces fierce opposition from countries including the UK and Ireland. This week tax commissioner Pierre Moscovici said agreement on his radical EU tax reform plans was unlikely at least six months.
Philp J.,Oecd Nuclear Energy Agency
Energy and Environmental Science | Year: 2015
Key objectives for a bioeconomy are now embedded in the strategic activities of more than 30 countries, with an increasing number developing a national bioeconomy strategy. In a bioeconomy, fossil-based commodities and electricity start to be replaced by bio-based. This is meant to address some of the so-called 'grand challenges' being faced by society, but especially energy security (by reducing dependence on imported fossil fuels) and climate change (by reducing greenhouse gas emissions). However, in the vast majority of countries that have bioenergy and biofuels policies, there is either no policy support for bio-based materials (especially chemicals and plastics) or it is limited to R&D subsidy. And yet, studies repeatedly show that higher added value and job creation are to be found in materials production. This paper suggests a cost-effective public policy strategy to redress this balance. The strategy also addresses a weakness of bio-based production-low efficiency-by creating stimulus for companies to innovate their biocatalysts and bioprocesses. © 2015 The Royal Society of Chemistry.
Froy F.,Oecd Nuclear Energy Agency
Oxford Review of Economic Policy | Year: 2013
There is a rising interest in both skills policy and industrial policy in OECD countries following the economic downturn. But how can skills policy best support industrial growth? In the UK, the coalition government is arguing for an industrial policy which is bottom-up, supporting networks of employers and helping to build productive local supply chains. There is simultaneous investment in a more 'employer-led' skills policy, in order to better tackle skills shortages and gaps. But is an employer-led skills policy the best way of boosting industrial growth in all UK regions? Are there potential market failures in employer-led policies of which the public sector should be aware? This article warns against taking an overly simplistic approach to skills development, arguing that while skills policies should be flexible to the needs of employers, there is still justification for investing in a broad educational curriculum at the local level. Further, policy-makers may need proactively to help employers to better use skills in some regions in order to boost productivity and growth.
de Mello L.,Oecd Nuclear Energy Agency
Environment and Planning C: Government and Policy | Year: 2011
With this paper I test the hypothesis that, by giving people more voice in the government decision-making process, fiscal decentralisation fosters social capital, measured in terms of interpersonal trust. Empirical evidence based on World Values Survey data and seemingly unrelated probit estimations for a cross-section of countries suggests that people living in federal and decentralized countries find it more important to have a voice in government decisions than their zcounterparts living in unitary and centralised countries. Provoice attitudes are, in turn, associated with greater social capital. The cross-country estimations are complemented by country-specific regressions for Brazil and Indonesia on account of these countries' experiences with fiscal decentralisation. The results show that the cohorts of individuals that have been exposed to decentralisation are in general more provoice (and trustful of strangers in the case of Brazil) than their counterparts that have not been exposed to decentralisation. These findings are not driven by the effects of political liberalisation on people's attitudes towards the importance of having a voice in government decisions and interpersonal trust.
Devaux M.,Oecd Nuclear Energy Agency
The European journal of health economics : HEPAC : health economics in prevention and care | Year: 2015
A key policy objective in OECD countries is to achieve adequate access to health care for all people on the basis of need. Previous studies have shown that there are inequities in health care services utilisation (HCSU) in the OECD area. In recent years, measures have been taken to enhance health care access. This paper re-examines income-related inequities in doctor visits among 18 selected OECD countries, updating previous results for 12 countries with 2006-2009 data, and including six new countries. Inequalities in preventive care services are also considered for the first time. The indirect standardisation procedure is used to estimate the need-adjusted HCSU and concentration indexes are derived to gauge inequalities and inequities. Overall, inequities in HCSU remain present in OECD countries. In most countries, for the same health care needs, people with higher incomes are more likely to consult a doctor than those with lower incomes. Pro-rich inequalities in dental visits and cancer screening uptake are also found in nearly all countries, although the magnitude of these varies among countries. These findings suggest that further monitoring of inequalities is essential in order to assess whether country policy objectives are achieved on a regular basis.
Paunov C.,Oecd Nuclear Energy Agency
Research Policy | Year: 2012
The longer term impact of the global crisis depends on how business innovation capacities were affected. Understanding which firms suffered most is essential for developing adequate post-crisis recovery policies. This paper provides first quantitative evidence on these questions based on an original firm-level dataset for eight Latin American countries in 2008-2009. We find the crisis led many firms to stop ongoing innovation projects. Probit regression results show that firms with access to public funding were less likely to abandon these investments. Younger firms and businesses supplying foreign multinationals or suffering export shocks were more likely to do so. © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
News Article | March 2, 2017
A crash in Australia’s “unprecedented” housing market could lead to a broader economic downturn, according to a report from the OECD. In its first major review of the Australian economy since 2014, the OECD warned the housing market was showing “hints of a slowdown”, in what it identified as an “extreme vulnerability” for the economy. “A large drop-off in house prices could cut household consumption and increase mortgage defaults … The market may not ease gently but develop into a rout on prices and demand with significant macroeconomic implications,” they said. “A continued rise of the market, fuelled by both investor and owner-occupier demand, may end in a significant downward correction that spreads to the rest of the economy.” Australia’s house prices have increased by 250% in real terms since the mid 1990s, with the median house price in Sydney hitting almost $1m at the end of January. The OECD attributed this boom to domestic buyers rather than foreign investment, and recommended government policy should pressure banks to limit mortgage lending for investment properties, and avoid risky loans – echoing 2014 measures already put in place by the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority. Household debt also rose to record levels, with the debt to disposable income ratio rising to 186.9% at the end of September last year. However, the report noted household debt was “concentrated in high income households”, and was balanced by rising asset values and low interest rates. A global plunge in iron and coal prices was also identified as another major vulnerability, and the OECD noted the economy still faced “challenges” in the gender pay gap and in greenhouse gas emissions. It recommended an emissions trading scheme be adopted if carbon reduction targets “beyond those brought about by the Direct Action Plan” were needed. “The price of carbon emissions in Australia is low, with large shares of emissions in industry, electricity, agriculture and fisheries are not priced at all. This weakens the incentives to cut carbon in a cost-effective manner,” the report said.
News Article | November 16, 2016
LONDON, November 16, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- 10% fall in global deaths from terrorism in 2015 overshadowed by a rise in the overall impact of terrorism as more countries register record terrorist levels Military success against IS...