PRESS RELEASE 167
​“Recovery from the crisis must lead us towards a transformation of societies”, says Arancha González-Laya

At the “Pre-Ministerial” meeting of the OECD held today

26/10/2020

​At the meeting for “Pre-Ministerial Talks” of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) this morning, the Spanish Minister for Foreign Affairs, the European Union and Cooperation, Arancha González-Laya, said that “recovery from the COVID crisis must lead us towards a transformation of societies” during a discussion with the Secretary-General of the OECD, Ángel Gurría.

Arancha González-Laya believes that “the pandemic has accelerated a series of emerging trends. We now face an opportunity to try to understand what we should be doing and do it differently”. “Multilateralism and cooperation should be the answer” in this regard, she said, “due to the existence of enormous interdependency”, a proposal that the Spanish minister believes should “focus on democracy”.

“The best recipe for building solid economies is to guarantee that they can all advance and that there are no societies, territories or parts of our planet left behind. We should ensure that everyone can benefit from this economy that we all want to build together. Meeting these expectations is the basis of democracy”, said the Spanish Minister for Foreign Affairs.

Arancha González-Laya said that chairing the OECD Ministerial Council this year “demonstrates the commitment from Spain to improving global governance”. Such transformative and committed action is what “we are trying to undertake in Spain through the Recovery and Resilience Plan to build a better economy”, she said.

The main goal for the Spanish presidency of the OECD Ministerial Council has been to focus this forum on debate around the response from countries to the new reality shaped by the pandemic and how countries can join forces to offer a joint response. In this debate, “we shouldn’t only be looking at what needs to change, but how. It is very important for the OECD to support us in that definition of “what and the how”, with innovative ideas that help us to make progress”, she said.

Economic, social and sustainable matters being discussed to overcome the crisis

Under the title of “A Transformative Recovery. Towards more resilient, inclusive and sustainable societies and economies”, today’s forum was available via an open webcast, opened by Angel Gurría and consisted of two panels. The first panel discussed the current situation in terms of economics and from a recovery perspective, while the second panel focused on the recovery from a more social and sustainable approach.

The two panels included figures from the world of academia, business, journalism and international institutions, such as: Ana Patricia Botín, Chairwoman of Banco Santander; Minouche Shafic, Director of the London School of Economics; Martin Wolf, from the Financial Times; Vera Songwe, Under Secretary-General of the United Nations; Jeffrey Sachs, Director of the Centre for Sustainable Development at Columbia University and President of the United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network; Diane Coyle, from Cambridge University; Enrico Letta, Dean of the Paris School of International Affairs; Javier Solana, as President of the ESADE Centre for Global Economics and Geopolitics; and Manuel Muñiz, State Secretary for Global Spain at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the European Union and Cooperation.

Online high-level ministerial meeting

The OECD Ministerial Council Meeting will take place on 28 and 29 October. The opening ceremony (at 12:00 on 28 October, via open webcast) will be attended by the Secretary-General of this international body and the President of the Government of Spain, Pedro Sánchez.

Under the slogan of “The Path to Recovery: strong, resilient, green and inclusive”, the meeting will gather economic affairs, treasury and trade ministers from OECD countries and will discuss measures capable of strengthening international cooperation and “better reconstruction” after the crisis. The OECD ministers will debate macroeconomic policies and recovery plans on employment and social protection, trade and investment, resilient global value chains and the necessary measures for a green recovery.

It should be noted that three preparatory meetings were held before this meeting: a meeting on 10 June was dedicated to economic affairs and chaired by the Third Vice-President of the Government and Minister for Economic Affairs and Digital Transformation, Nadia Calviño; one on 7 July was dedicated to inclusion and employment and chaired by the Minister for Inclusion, Social Security and Migration, José Luis Escrivá; and one on 14 September was dedicated to the “green recovery” and chaired by the Minister for the Ecological Transition and Demographic Challenge, Teresa Ribera.

 

 

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