On Tuesday, the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and the Direction General for Development Cooperation (DG DEVCO) of the European Union signed an agreement as partners in the Regional Facility for Development in Transition for Latin America and the Caribbean. A similar agreement was signed with the United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) on 7 May 2018, in Havana, Cuba.
The Regional Facility for Development in Transition was launched in May 2018 as an EU-led initiative, developed with the support of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and its Development Centre and the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) to assess how transitions to higher levels of income determine the capacity of the Countries in Latin America and the Caribbean to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals established in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
The Facility is governed by a Steering Committee, which is chaired by DG DEVCO's Regional Director for Latin America and the Caribbean, Jolita Butkeviciene, and has adopted its 1st Annual Action Plan. The 1st Steering Committee has gathered Director-level figures from the other four entities participating: Hugo Sobral, Deputy Managing Director of the Americas within the European External Action Service (EEAS), Andreas Schaal, Director of OECD Global Relations Secretariat and G20 Sous Sherpa, Mario Pezzini, Director of the Development Centre of the OECD and Special Advisor to the OECD Secretary-General on Development, and Mario Cimoli, Deputy Executive Secretary of UN Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC).
Mario Pezzini, Jolita Butkeviciene and Andreas Schaal signing the agreement
The Steering Committee of the Regional Facility for Development in Transition has decided which initiatives will be implemented on the following pillars of intervention:
- Pillar I: Supporting high-level regional strategic dialogue on key common challenges - the Latin American Economic Outlook (LEO).
- Pillar II: Supporting national policy reforms - country specific policy reviews and support to implementation of recommendations.
- Pillar III: Supporting regional policy dialogue and exchange of best practices on themes directly related to transitions in development and SDGs.
The concept of 'development in transition' is particularly relevant in Latin America and the Caribbean, where most countries, even though they are reaching higher income levels, continue to face structural development challenges. Those are linked, amongst others, to inequalities, regional disparities, limited domestic resource mobilisation (DRM), unmet social demands, as well as weak innovation capacities and low diversification.
In this transitional process, countries work to address internal vulnerabilities in the face of new global risks, which require innovative national and coordinated regional and international policy responses.
Through this Facility, the EU will strengthen its engagement with partner countries in Latin America and the Caribbean as well as with the OECD and ECLAC. The Facility will assess how transitions to higher levels of income can benefit from improved strategic and policy capacities to achieve the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The Facility will also pilot tailored initiatives to offer new responses to changing realities and challenges.
The EU has allocated an initial EUR 9.5 million to the Facility.