Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Eurochambres says EU Economy 20 Years Behind the US

According to a new study published by Eurochambres, the Association of European Chambers of Commerce and Industry, "the economic performance of the EU is about 20 years behind that of the US." See also the Press Release about the study. According to the study, the EU is 5 years behind the US in productivity as measured by GDP per hour, 14 years behind the US in productivity measured by GDP per employed, 18 years behind in terms of income as measured by GDP per capita, 23 years behind in terms of R&D (research and development) and 25 years behind in the employment rate.

Christoph Leitl, President of Eurochambres writes:

Back to the future!
In which century are we living? According to a study presented by EUROCHAMBRES at the Spring Business Forum some days ago, we are living in the late 1970s or early 1980s. The report compares key economic indicators in the EU and the US - such as employment, economic growth and investment in research and development - in terms of "time distances" between the two regions, forecasting how many years it could take the EU to catch up with the US and under what conditions of growth. The results are not encouraging: the US has a clear economic time lead. The current EU levels in key economic indicators were reached by the US 20 to 30 years ago, and it will take decades for Europe to catch up - and then only if there is a considerable improvement in the EU! This again underpins the urgent importance of reviving economic growth in Europe. EUROCHAMBRES urges European leaders who will gather at a Summit in Brussels on 22 March to fully support the priorities of growth and jobs as outlined by the European Commission. We expect the Summit to show real political dedication to achieving 3% growth per annum in order to create an additional 10,000,000 jobs over the coming five years. We expect the Prime Ministers to take personal responsibility for delivering real economic growth involving all relevant socio-economic actors. The time has come to get Europe's future back on track!

We here at EU Pundit might add as an aside that Eurochambres has numerous very useful publications on Europe which can be downloaded.

Here is the relevant contact data for Eurochambres:
Chamber House
Avenue des Arts, 19 A-D
B-1000 Brussels
Tel.: +32(0)2-282 08 50
Fax: +32(0)2-230 00 38/280 01 91

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