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UK will galvanise support for Ukraine’s recovery at OECD meetings

The UK plans to galvanise global support to help Ukraine’s reconstruction, as it chairs the annual Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) meeting in Paris.

by gary cartwright
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Foreign Secretary James Cleverly (pictured), hosting the annual Ministerial Council Meeting after visiting Ukraine earlier this week, will set out how the UK and its fellow OECD member countries will support its reconstruction, ahead of the Ukraine Recovery Conference in London later this month (June 21 and 22).

The gathering in Paris will also set out how the UK, chairing the meeting for the first time since 1975, and the other 37 member countries of the OECD can collectively tackle global challenges. These include strengthening global economic resilience, tackling energy insecurity and climate change, and addressing the use of new and emerging technologies, such as Artificial Intelligence. The meeting will also discuss the path to Ukraine and more countries in the Indo-Pacific region becoming members of the global economic organisation.

Mr Cleverly will be joined at the meeting in Paris by Secretary of State for Business and Trade Kemi Badenoch; Secretary of State for Science, Innovation and Technology Chloe Smith; Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero Grant Shapps; and the Financial Secretary to the Treasury, Victoria Atkins, who will be chairing sessions focused on economic resilience, energy, and international tax. They will discuss issues of direct relevance to the UK, such as the Prime Minister’s priority of growing the economy, reducing debt, and halving inflation.

Countries from the G7, G20 and EU are also sending senior ministers.

Every day we witness Ukraine’s suffering and tragic losses as Russia’s cruel and illegal invasion continues. This includes loss of life, loss of homes, loss of livelihoods and a colossal loss of economic opportunities, but never a loss of hope, as I saw for myself when I visited Ukraine this week.

I welcome the role that Ukraine’s international partners, including the OECD, are playing in helping them rebuild. The people of Ukraine didn’t ask for this war. They have sacrificed a lot for the values we all share. The OECD must support them. Their fight is our fight.

It is only by working together as an international community of like-minded partners that we can address global challenges and secure a resilient and prosperous future for all – James Cleverley.

UK expertise is set to support the OECD’s Ukraine Country Programme, due to be launched today. UK government experts will support and advise the OECD to establish a programme that has impact and delivers for the people of Ukraine. Funding from the UK’s Good Governance Fund will back the programme for an initial two-year period.

The fresh support for Ukraine’s recovery announced today follows the destruction of the Nova Kakhovka dam in Ukraine this week.

The FCDO is also due to announce at the OECD meeting a £50m portfolio of research projects to be implemented via the Climate Adaptation and Resilience (CLARE) programme, launched at COP26, which is co-funded by the UK and Canada to support science and innovation for climate resilience in lower income countries.

In addition, the FCDO will propose a strategic framework to strengthen the OECD’s future engagement with the Indo-Pacific region. This follows the publication of the Integrated Review Refresh in March 2023, which set out how the UK will prioritise the Indo-Pacific in the long-term, making the region a permanent pillar of the UK’s international policy.

OECD members will also discuss the issue of energy security, with Russia’s illegal invasion of Ukraine having triggered a spike in global energy prices, impacting households around the world, including in the UK where the government has taken unprecedented action by covering around half of the typical household’s bill.

Putin’s weaponisation of energy served as a global wake-up call that we must secure our energy supply and independence.

The UK is leading the world in the pursuit of cleaner, cheaper and more secure energy such as nuclear, solar and wind power, which will ensure we can never again be held ransom through a dependency on fossil fuels.

We are committed to freezing Putin out of global energy markets and working with our international partners and allies, including the OECD, will deliver energy security for generations to come. Energy Secretary Grant Shapps.

The Business and Trade Secretary will chair a session of OECD Ministers on economic resilience where they will discuss how together we can build trade, investment and diversify supply chains in response to the challenges our economies are facing. They will agree the launch of key trade and investment-related deliverables, including the updated OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises on Responsible Business Conduct and the launch of the OECD Trade Strategy.

Recognising the importance of corporate tax revenues to developing countries, the Financial Secretary to the Treasury will chair a session on tax for development, in which developing countries will discuss how the OECD can accelerate efforts to help them tackle tax avoidance and support sustainable development.

On Tuesday (June 6), Secretary of State for Science, Innovation and Technology Chloe Smith also chaired discussions at the first ever Global Forum on Technology, where participants from over 50 countries and stakeholders from industry and civil society discussed the opportunities and risks presented by emerging technologies, including immersive technology and the metaverse, engineering biology and the role of Artificial Intelligence.

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