Cablegate: Eeb a/S Fernandez Advocates Greater Focus


DE RUEHFR #0009/01 0061420
R 061420Z JAN 10






E.O. 12958: N/A

1. (SBU) Summary: EEB Assistant Secretary Jose W.
Fernandez co-chaired the December 7-8 OECD Global
Forum on International Investment and underscored
the importance of foreign direct investment for
global economic recovery. He discussed the upcoming
OECD 50th Anniversary and OECD support for the G20
with Secretary General Angel Gurria, who sought
advice on how to use most effectively the OECD's
comparative advantage on structural issues such as
competition, corporate governance, and R&D.
International Energy Agency (IEA) Executive Director
Nobuo Tanaka briefed Fernandez on the IEA's latest
World Energy Outlook and its role in providing data
for the G20's work on energy subsidies. Tanaka
suggested that green growth, energy subsidies work,
and follow up to Copenhagen are priority areas for
future U.S.-IEA collaboration. Bilateral meetings
are covered septel. End summary.

2. (U) A/S Fernandez and Egyptian Minister of
Investment Mahmoud Moheildin co-chaired the eighth
annual Global Forum on International Investment
December 7-8 at OECD's Paris headquarters. In
recent years the OECD and UNCTAD have jointly
sponsored annual meetings of the Forum and a wide
range of countries, members of civil society, and
academics participate ? this year over 500 attendees
from 74 countries and 10 International
Organizations. The U.S. and others have worked with
OECD and UNCTAD to improve collaboration and raise
the profile of the event given the growing
importance of international investment policy to
economic growth and development.

3. (SBU) In his opening remarks, A/S Fernandez
emphasized the importance of international
investment for job creation, economic recovery, and
addressing global challenges such as climate change.
He stressed investment's role as a driver of trade
flows and economic development, and its growing
importance on the international economic policy
agenda. He also highlighted the centrality of the
investment relationship between the U.S. and Europe,
noting that the United States will want to engage
Europe's new leaders, the Commission, and Member
States as competency over investment policy shifts
to the Commission with the Lisbon Treaty.

4. (SBU) Addressing the issue of whether
international investment was a force for a stronger,
cleaner, and fairer world economy, other panelists,
including the Costa Rican Trade Minister, the Vice
Minister of Planning and Investment from Vietnam,
Indonesia's Vice Minister for Agriculture and the
Secretary General of UNCTAD, all agreed on the
important role of cross-border investment. Concerns
included improving developing country capacity to
attract green investment (and benefit from the Clean
Development Mechanism), fostering balance between
short- and long-term interests, and avoiding
investment protectionism.

5. (SBU) Minister Moheildin emphasized Egypt's
success in attracting FDI after a series of reforms,
while warning of the potential for global fiscal
stimulus to crowd out investment. Nevertheless,
most participants agreed that so far there has been
little incidence of protectionist measures.
Moheildin stressed the importance of creating an
attractive business climate, while noting that
investment incentives can create distortions. A/S
Fernandez reinforced that view, and cautioned
against a regulatory race to the bottom.

6. (SBU) A/S Fernandez met with OECD Secretary
General Gurria on December 7. Gurria briefed A/S
Fernandez on the organization's work with respect to

anti-corruption measures, innovation, India's
investment review and other work. He asked how the
OECD could be most helpful, particularly in support
of the G20. Gurria acknowledged that the OECD
sometimes tries to anticipate needs and sometimes
pushes too hard. He described the OECD?s peer
review process and the increasing acceptance of its
comparative data such as on education with PISA (an
OECD program that administers standardized
educational achievement tests to 15-year-olds to
allow for international comparison). He also raised
the upcoming OECD 50th Anniversary (December 2010 to
September 2011) and expressed hope that perhaps
Secretary Clinton could chair the 2011 Ministerial
Council Meeting or that President Obama could have
an event at the OECD while in France for the 2011 G-
20 Summit.

7. (SBU) Noting that he would be departing for
Washington the next day, Gurria said that he would
be meeting with Under Secretary Hormats, with whom
he said he had discussed anti-corruption work, a
model investment treaty, review of the Guidelines
for Multinational Enterprises, innovation, and green
growth. Regarding the possibility of work on a
model investment treaty, Carolyn Ervin, Director of
the OECD's Financial and Enterprise Affairs
Directorate, described the "soft" process of
building wider acceptance of certain legal
principles, particularly among developing countries,
in advance of potentially opening discussions about
a model treaty.

8. (SBU) Gurria provided A/S Fernandez with a
written status report of OECD work related to the
G20 in what he said were 14 different areas (such as
tax, fuel subsidies, anti-bribery, etc.). He
referred to the G20 Framework for Strong,
Sustainable and Balanced Growth and said that in St.
Andrews the OECD was "told to help out," though the
IMF has the lead. Gurria sought U.S. advice on how
to use the OECD's comparative advantage on issues
such as competition, corporate governance and R&D.
He explained that he had traveled to Canada and
Korea to seek their input. Gurria predicted that
the G20 would shift away from regulatory issues like
bank capital requirements, which are too detailed
for leaders, and toward broader issues like
sustainable growth, climate change and job creation,
where the OECD has a natural role.

9. (SBU) A/S Fernandez praised Gurria and the OECD
for its valuable work and expressed his interest in
maintaining dialogue. He noted the strong U.S.
interest in outreach to non-members. Regarding the
50th Anniversary, he downplayed the possibility of
President Obama's participation while suggesting
that a role for Secretary Clinton was not
impossible. A/S Fernandez signaled support for
green growth work and interest in the recent
investment review of India. He cautioned Gurria on
not over-extending and keeping focused on the work
the OECD does well, a point Gurria had clearly heard
before. "Our concern is not that we overextend," he
said, "but that we haven't been telling you what we
do. But I take your point." Gurria concluded the
meeting by inviting A/S Fernandez to participate in
the spring Executive Council in Special Session.

10. (SBU) A/S Fernandez also met with International
Energy Agency (IEA) Executive Director Nobuo Tanaka
on December 7. Tanaka discussed the latest edition
of the IEA's flagship publication, the World Energy
Outlook. Fernandez was particularly interested in
the IEA's forecasting on different scenarios to
address reductions in energy-related greenhouse gas
emissions. Tanaka reviewed what OECD and non-OECD

countries would need to do to achieve a target of
450 ppm of CO2. This included meeting or exceeding
energy efficiency goals, investing in new
technologies, and developing alternative energy
sources. He noted the IEA's estimates for the
amount of investment needed, both from the public
and private sectors.

11. (SBU) In addition, Fernandez and Tanaka
discussed outreach efforts to India and China.
Tanaka indicated that while China was close to being
able to meet IEA requirements for strategic
petroleum reserves, India was not yet ready to make
such a commitment. Indonesia, however, was very
interested in developing a strategic petroleum

12. (SBU) Finally, Tanaka described the work the
IEA was doing to fulfill the G20's request for
information on energy subsidies. He noted that
details were still being worked out, but that IEA
would be responsible for the data on subsidies. In
response to Fernandez's question about how EEB could
support IEA, Tanaka indicated there were many areas
for cooperation. He noted green growth, the
subsidies work and next steps following Copenhagen.
He said that energy security and climate issues must
be addressed together. And finally, Tanaka noted
the IEA can always use additional resources.

13. (U) This cable was cleared by EEB A/S Fernandez.


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