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OECD Reviews of Labour Market and Social Policies: Latvia 2016

image of OECD Reviews of Labour Market and Social Policies: Latvia 2016

Latvia has undergone major economic and social change since the early 1990s. Despite an exceptionally deep recession following the global financial crisis, impressive economic growth over the past two decades has narrowed income and productivity gaps relative to comparator countries in the OECD. But Latvians report low degrees of life satisfaction, very large numbers of Latvians have left the country, and growth has not been inclusive. A volatile economy and very large income disparities create pressing needs for more effective social and labour-market policies. The government’s reform programme rightly acknowledges inequality as a key challenge. However, without sustained policy efforts and adequate resources, there is a risk that productivity and income growth could remain below potential and social cohesion could be further weakened by high or rising inequality.

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Foreword

This volume consists of a background report prepared by the OECD Secretariat to support the Labour Market and Social Policy Review of Latvia which is currently being undertaken by the OECD Employment, Labour and Social Affairs Committee as part of the process for Latvia’s accession to the OECD [see the Roadmap for the Accession of Latvia to the OECD Convention: C(2013)122/FINAL]. In accordance with paragraph 14 of Latvia’s Accession Roadmap, the Employment, Labour and Social Affairs Committee agreed to declassify the report in its current version and publish it under the authority of the Secretary General, in order to allow a wider audience to become acquainted with the issues raised in the report. Publication of this document and the analysis and recommendations contained therein, does not prejudge in any way the results of the review of Latvia by the Employment, Labour and Social Affairs Committee as part of its process of accession to the OECD.

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