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2002 OECD Economic Surveys: Netherlands 2002

image of OECD Economic Surveys: Netherlands 2002

This 2002 edition of OECD's periodic review of the Dutch economy examines recent economic developments, policies and prospects and  includes special features on coping with population ageing and on productivity growth and the new economy.

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Productivity Growth and the New Economy

Productivity growth, along with employment, is the motor that drives higher living standards. Indeed, for the coming century, this probably will be the only factor contributing to rising living standards as demographic factors mean that labour force is likely to be stable (see Chapter V). This makes it particularly important to ensure that policies support high productivity growth, including through the diffusion of information and communications technology (ICT). Such policies should be part of a comprehensive productivity growth strategy, as described in the OECD Growth Project, including action aimed at promoting entrepreneurship, making capital markets more flexible and increasing the availability of human capital. This chapter reviews recent developments in productivity growth and focuses on one aspect of increasing productivity growth – diffusion of ICT. The chapter assesses the extent to which the "new economy" is already apparent in the data and concludes with suggestions for reforms – drawn from the OECD Growth Project – most likely to facilitate an increase in productivity growth.

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