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Monday, March 24, 2008

Israel joins the OECD Development Center

Israel joins the OECD Development Centre

"Israel's joining the Development Centre reinforces its important contribution to international efforts to improve living conditions in developing countries."

(Communicated by the Foreign Ministry and Ministry of Finance Spokespersons)

The Council of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation & Development (OECD) has approved Israel's membership in the Development Centre, an arm of the OECD. The Development Centre, which was set up in 1962 as a semi-independent body, comprises OECD member states as well as non-member states. Israel will be represented in the Centre by delegates from the Foreign Affairs and Finance Ministries.

The purpose of the Development Centre is to develop economic and social ties between the OECD and developing countries. The Centre was established to aid decision-makers in stimulating growth and improving the living conditions in developing countries. The Centre also serves as a common platform through which member states can share their experience in economic and social development.

One of the Centre's goals is to create a network of working ties between research institutes and universities in member states. Another goal is policy research, which would be carried out in different areas by participating member states and an OECD professional team.

There are currently 32 member states in the Development Centre, of which 23 are members of the OECD and nine are candidates for the OECD or represent emerging economies. In its recent expansion, three states joined the Development Centre: Israel, which is a candidate for membership in the OECD and has 50 years experience in international cooperation; Vietnam, which is an emerging economy in Asia; and Egypt, which holds an important place in the Arab world as well as among the African nations.

Mr. Oded Brook, Head of the International Affairs Department in the Finance Ministry, stated, "Israel's joining the Development Centre is another step towards joining the OECD, and reinforces Israel's standing as a state that makes an important contribution to joint international efforts to improve living conditions in developing countries and [to promote] cooperation with these countries."

Mr. Haim Divon, Deputy Director General for International Cooperation, who attended his first Governing Board meeting in Paris on March 18, said, "We view with great importance our participation in the Development Centre, an arm of the OECD. On the one hand, Israel brings the rich experience it has gained in 50 years of activity through the Center for International Cooperation (MASHAV) throughout the world, and, on the other hand, feels obligated to fit in with the policy, goals and operation patterns being formulated in the context of the Development Centre."

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