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Homepage Competitive and Sustainable Growth - Making the European Research Area a Reality
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Graphic element Research > Growth > The Growth Programme > Programme rationale > Contexts
Graphic element Programme rationale


  • Two million industrial enterprises produce goods and services across the EU, worth an estimated 4.5 billion a year, and employ 40 million people. Some 99% of these companies are SMEs (small and medium-size enterprises).
  • Freight and passenger land transport is growing by 2% a year, leading to a doubling of traffic in the period 1998 to 2025. The transport sector accounts for 7.5% of Europe's GDP but 2% of GDP are costs linked with transport congestion.
  • The land and marine transport industry has a turnover of 600 billion and employs more than 12 million people. It transports more than 90% of European passengers and goods.
  • Transport is the second largest producer of CO2 (carbon dioxide). Every day more than 5,000 km of motorways are congested. Accidents and pollution cost the equivalent of 2% of Europe's GDP. Each year 42,000 people are killed on EU roads.
  • Air traffic is forecast to double in the period 2000 to 2015 and treble in the period 2000-2025. The EU aeronautics industry exports two thirds of its production.


The European challenge
Programme approach
Budget breakdown
Support for SMEs
Involving non EU countries
Training in Europe
International agreements


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