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2012 Report on the Member States industrial competitiveness performance

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The new industrial performance scoreboard looks at the Member States' industrial performance in five key areas: manufacturing productivity, export performance, innovation and sustainability, the business environment and infrastructure, and finance and investment.

The new industrial performance scoreboard looks at the Member States' industrial performance in five key areas: manufacturing productivity, export performance, innovation and sustainability, the business environment and infrastructure, and finance and investment. Based on the results of these indicators, three main groups:

  • The ‘consistent performers’, whose industries are dominated by technologically advanced firms and whose workforces are highly skilled. This group includes: Germany, Denmark, Finland, Sweden, Austria, Ireland, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, Belgium and France.
  • The group of ‘uneven performers’, who tend to show uneven performance, good in some criteria, but below average in others. This group comprises of Estonia, Slovenia, Spain, Italy, Portugal, Greece, Malta, Cyprus and Luxembourg.
  • The ‘catching-up’ group, which face significant challenges, as their move towards more knowledge- and skills-oriented industries is hampered by weak innovation capacity and knowledge transfer. This group consists of Bulgaria, Romania, the Czech Republic, Poland, Hungary, Slovakia, Latvia and Lithuania.

Member States have made good progress in strengthening the sustainability of industry, improving support to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), and reforming public administration. They show a continued shift to a more knowledge-based economy, with increased labour productivity and highly-skilled labour. Member States have engaged in reforms to improve business prospects and strengthen their competitiveness:

  • As a whole, innovation performance has improved, but
  • the convergence between more and less innovative countries seems to have slowed down in recent years.
  • the innovation gap between Member States risks widening due to the different ways they have responded to the economic crisis.
  • significant challenges remain in promoting private research and enhancing competition in network industries (energy, telecommunication, and transport).
  • Access to finance has worsened in the majority of Member States, particularly for SMEs.

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