The Department of Economic Development (DED) of the Organization of American States (OAS) promotes economic growth, competitiveness and innovation in the Member States through programs and projects, which are designed to enhance the productivity of economic actors so they can participate better in domestic and international markets. The focus is especially on micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs), given their role and contribution in fostering job creation, poverty reduction and prosperity with social inclusion. The DED promotes political dialogue, the exchange of experiences and best practices, strategic alliances, and the development of commercial niches and opportunities.
The DED operate at two levels:
Programs and projects include the cross-cutting components of gender, youth and attention to vulnerable groups. Particular consideration is given to small businesses owned by women, young entrepreneurs starting innovative high-impact ventures, and MSMEs in rural communities.