The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) brings together the governments of countries committed to democracy and the market economy from around the world to:
- support sustainable economic growth
- boost employment
- raise living standards
- maintain financial stability
- assist other countries' economic development
- contribute to growth in world trade
The Australian Government provides an ambassador and Deputy Ambassador to the OECD. These positions rotate between the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) and the Treasury.
The Department is not represented in a permanent capacity at the OECD, however it actively participates in a number of communications related working groups. The digital economy is a strong priority of the OECD’s forward work program.
Currently, the Department is involved in the work of three working parties to the OECD:
- Working Party on Information Security and Privacy (WPISP)
- Working Party on the Information Economy (WPIE)
- Working Party on Communications Infrastructure Services Policy (WCISP)
The Department has a strong level of involvement with the overarching committee—the Information, Communications, and Computing Policy (ICCP). A DBCDE official currently chairs the WPISP and also represented on the Extended Bureau of the ICCP as a result.
Focus of OECD 2009–10
The OECD ministerial meeting was held on 17–18 June 2008 in Seoul, Korea. It provided an opportunity for communication and information technology ministers to develop a shared global vision for the future of the internet economy.
There were a number of key outcomes.
- Adoption of the Ministerial Declaration (referred to as the Seoul Declaration) by 39 countries and the European Community. The declaration outlines the basic principles that will guide further development of the Internet Economy. It will guide the work of the OECD and its member countries in pursuing digital economy objectives over the next few years. New areas of emphasis for the OECD included the issues of identity management and the role of ICT in climate change response.
- Ministers welcomed and recognised the importance of the policy framework (the OECD report Shaping Policies for the Future of the Internet Economy) which supports the Seoul Declaration, recommending that governments consider it in developing their policies. The report includes new policy guidance in eight areas. In two of these areas, formal OECD Council Recommendations were adopted.
Shaping Policies for the Future of the Internet Economy
- During the round table discussion on ‘Building Confidence’, ministers acknowledged the need for enhanced international collaboration in cyber safety and cyber security initiatives.
The themes of the OECD ministerial meeting included enabling the internet as a catalyst to improve future economic performance and social development, and leveraging the evolution of the internet to:
- maximise the benefits from the convergence of what were separate platforms (video, telephony and data) to the internet
- promote creativity and enhance the role of the internet as a source and a tool for stimulating innovation and growth
- build confidence in the internet as a trusted infrastructure to conduct economic and social activities.
First Assistant Secretary
Digital Economy Services Division
Tel: +61 2 6271 1811
(Keith Besgrove chairs the WPISP and is a bureau member of the ICCP)
Cybersafety and Trade Branch
Tel: +61 2 6271 1507