The agreement will be signed by Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaitė during the OECD Ministerial Council meeting in Paris.
“It’s a club that will allow us to set a global tone and also take part in global geopolitical processes as well as give us an opportunity to raise the level of governance, economy and innovation standards,” the president told the Lithuanian national radio on Wednesday.
She also noted that Lithuania’s path of reforms does not end with OECD membership and changes in the public sector, management of states enterprises, education and fight against corruption are still necessary as well as dealing with the social exclusion problem.
“Any accession process is a great stimulus for any state to further walk that development path and improve its state governance, economic development and ensure people’s wellbeing,” the head of state said.
According to the presidential office, OECD membership is the crowning achievement of Lithuania, finalizing its establishment in the most influential international organizations. Being part of the OECD club will not only raise Lithuania’s national prestige but will also provide concrete benefits as Lithuania will be able to receive OECD’s high-level expert assistance, secure more favorable investment rating, receive cheaper loans and access global trade markets.
Lithuania is among those countries that have fulfilled membership requirements the fastest: it managed to do all membership related homework in three years from the start of the procedure, the statement said.
Under the OECD recommendations, Lithuania has reformed forestry and road maintenance enterprises, depoliticized the management of state owned enterprises and enhanced fight against corruption.
The accession agreement, signed by the president, will have to be ratified by the Seimas and deposited with the Government of France. Columbia joins the OECD together with Lithuania.
Lithuania’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs estimates the country’s OECD membership will cost 2.5–2.5 million euros per year.
Lithuania launched membership talks three years ago and finished them in April. The Baltic country was officially invited to join the OECD on May 3.
Lithuania lagged its neighbors in the accession process as Poland became an OECD member in 1996, followed by Estonia in 2010 and Latvia in 2016.
The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development is an international organization operating on the principles of democracy and market economy. It was founded in 1961 to stimulate economic progress and world trade. In 1948, the OECD originated as the Organization for European Economic Co-operation to help administer the Marshall Plan after WWII.