Remarks by Mithat Rende Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Turkey to the OECD at His First Session as Chairman of the Executive Committee (Executive Committee Meeting, 13 January 2015)

Mithat RENDE 13.01.2015


Distinguished Members of the Executive Committee,

Dear Friends and Colleagues,

I must first begin by expressing my strongest condemnation of the heinous terrorist attacks perpetrated last week in Paris, targeting the "Charlie Hebdo" magazine and Hyper Cacher, the security forces and innocent civilians. I convey my heartfelt condolences to the French people and to the families of the victims.

These murderous terrorist attacks, above all, are an aggression against humanity and its universal values. The perpetrators, hiding behind false claims of piety have grossly betrayed the civilisation to which they claim to belong. Terror has no religion, nationality or race. Terrorism is a crime against humanity and cannot be justified under any circumstances.

I would like our distinguished French colleagues to
know that we stand united and in solidarity with them and the French nation in this difficult time.

Dear Colleagues,

Let me continue by expressing once again what a
great honour and privilege it is to be elected as Chair of the Executive Committee. Turkey is one of the founding members of the OECD, yet it is the first time that the Chairmanship of ExCo is assumed by a Turkish Ambassador in the last 54 years. This makes my new duty all the more significant.

I would like to thank the Secretary General for his leadership and Ambassador Patrick van Haute and his team for their support and the valuable time they have spared to prepare this meeting.

I would also like to express my sincere gratitude to my predecessor Ambassador Chris Barrett for having so generously shared with me his experience as the former chair. The assistance he provided me before his departure is invaluable in facilitating the transition.

I must also convey my appreciation to the Vice Chairs Marie-Clair Sward Capra and Rebekah Riley for their warm welcome and readiness to assist me in our work. During my Chairmanship it is my intention to draw from their knowledge and deep experience. I shall also rely on the support and close cooperation of all of you. I am sure that we will achieve a great deal together.

Dear Colleagues,

As we enter a new year, our economies are faced with serious challenges.
As a result, the role and contributions of the OECD in the international economic discussions have become ever more important. This is particularly true for 2015 which will be a decisive year in devising the post 2015 development agenda, galvanizing global efforts to boost inclusive growth, thereby avoiding future crises as well as making the needed and expected breakthrough in the climate change negotiations next December in Paris.

OECD’s growing role in G20 work and activities is another important channel through which the Organization has an opportunity to contribute to global discussions on many key issues. At this point let me also express my thanks to the OECD G-20 Sherpa Ms. Gabriela Ramos and the Secretariat for their efforts and contributions to the work of G20 during Turkey’s Presidency.

Dear Colleagues,

The ExCo as one of the main bodies of the OECD has a great responsibility in assisting the Council to take the necessary decisions in a timely manner, to further our common objectives and interests and to increase the role and visibility of our Organization on a global scale.

And now a few words about working modalities. I would like to recall that the new decision making process will be implemented during our work. I intend to start the meeting at 9.30 am, have a 10 minute break at around 11.00 am and break for lunch at 13.00 pm.

As for interventions, I would appreciate it if you could all adhere to the 3 minute time limit during your statements so that we can allow for a broad exchange.

During our deliberations it is my hope that with your support we will be able to bridge differences which will enable us to carry out our work and move forward in a timely manner. However, there may be times when this will not always be the case. So I would be grateful if you could all be as constructive and flexible as possible to enable the Committee to work in an efficient manner.

Finally, I would like to thank the interpreters and all of you once again and wish you a very happy and successful year.


Monday - Friday

09:00 - 13:00 / 14:30 - 18:00

1/1/2021 1/1/2021 New Year's Eve
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