Bangkok, Thailand: RI Ambassador in Paris, Hotmangaradja Pandjaitan, together with OECD Japan Ambassador Hiroshi Oe, co-chaired the 3rd Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) Southeast Asia Regional Program (SEARP) Steering Group Meeting in Bangkok, Thailand (25/8).
This meeting discussed the achievements of the OECD Southeast Asia Regional Program (SEARP) in the last three years under the leadership of Indonesia and Japan. Besides, this meeting also formulated the future steps to strengthen OECD cooperation and contribution in the region. THe Steering Group is the highest forum in making decisions regarding cooperation within the OECD-SEARP framework.
Under the leadership of Indonesia and Japan, the Steering Group believes that OECD-SEARP is working well in strengthening OECD cooperation with Southeast Asian countries particularly in supporting economic integration in the region. While in Bangkok, Steering Group also discussed proposals from members to raise the level of the SEARP meeting to a higher level, and discussed the next co-chairmanship bid for the 2018-2020 period.
On the previous day, August 24, 2017, the SEARP meeting was preceded by the OECD Southeast Asia Regional Forum (SEARF), which took the theme of "Opportunities and Challenges of Digital Transformation in Southeast Asia". This forum is a means of dialogue and exchange of thoughts for officials, practitioners, experts and academics, as well as businessmen from ASEAN and OECD member countries.
This meeting was also attended by the Minister of Digital Economics of Thailand, Acting Minister of Foreign Affairs of Thailand, Secretary General of OECD (Angel Gurria), as well as officials from ASEAN countries and some international organizations to discuss issues and policies in addressing rapid digital development. Various policy options were discussed, based on OECD's best practices in facing challenges and exploiting opportunities from digital development.
In the said SEARF meeting, the RI Ambassador in Paris conveyed closing remarks, including the importance of mainstreaming various OECD programs with national development policies of each country in Southeast Asia. Thus, more useful results for inclusive development in the region can be obtained.
OECD is an international organization based in Paris, France, and engages in economic and development cooperation. Founded in 1960 as an organization of advanced economies in Europe and North America, OECD currently has 35 member states including several emerging economies, such as Korea, Turkey and Mexico. Indonesia, although not a member of the OECD, is one of the key partners, along with India, Brazil, South Africa and China. (Source: Indonesian Embassy in Paris/ej/pn)
Photo credit: from Twitter @APataud (for SEARF photo session)