OECD acts as instruments of soft international law

Keywords: Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), OECD law-making function, soft international law, OECD recommendation, OECD declaration, OECD arrangement, OECD understanding


A characteristic feature of the modern system of international relations is that the not only the international legal norms, but also
the rules of soft international law are the regulators, with the constantly growing share of the latter. There is a great variety of concepts
regarding the nature of soft international law in modern doctrine of international law. However, it is indisputable fact that international
organizations play significant role in its development. One of such international organizations is the Organization for Economic Cooperation
and Development, whose rule-making activities are largely implemented through the adoption of legally non-binding documents
but at the same time they have a significant impact on the behavior of the international law subjects. The organization unites 36 industrialized
countries. Thus, of the total number of regulations of various legal force adopted or developed under the auspices of the OECD
during the entire period of existence of this international organization, acts of soft international law account for approximately 78 per
cent. In total, the OECD adopted 454 regulations, including 13 international treaties, 87 decisions, 300 recommendations, 36 declarations
and 18 other legally non-binding international instruments. Recommendations are adopted in accordance with Art. 5, 6 and 7 of
the OECD Convention and paragraph 18B of the Rules of Procedure of the Organization and are transferred to the Member States for
consideration. So the Member States may, if they deem it appropriate, implement them in their national law. OECD Declarations are
legally optional framework documents establishing the general principles and long-term goals of cooperation between states within the
framework of this international organization. In general, declarations are not acts of the OECD within the meaning of Art. 5 of the
OECD Convention, but in practice their implementation is monitored by OECD bodies. Apart from recommendations and declarations
OECD also practices the following types of legal non-binding regulations: Arrangement and Understanding which can be described as
gentleman’s agreements and also the recommendations of the Development Assistance Committee (DAC) OECD. With all these do -
cuments, the OECD regulates international cooperation on a wide range of socio-economic issues, including the fight against corruption,
taxation, regional development, environmental protection, finance and investment, trade, industry, social policy, consumer protection,
science and education, shipbuilding and transport, energy, etc.


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How to Cite
Petrenko, A. (2020). OECD acts as instruments of soft international law. Law Review of Kyiv University of Law, 1(3), 398-402. https://doi.org/10.36695/2219-5521.3.2020.74
The legal system of Ukraine and international law, comparative legal studies