We need to do much better at turning our research into new and better services and products if we are to remain competitive in the global marketplace and improve the quality of life in Europe.
We are facing a situation of 'innovation emergency'. Europe is spending 0.8% of GDP less than the US and 1.5% less than Japan every year on Research & Development (R&D). Thousands of our best researchers and innovators have moved to countries where conditions are more favourable. Although the EU market is the largest in the world, it remains fragmented and not innovation-friendly enough. And other countries like China and South Korea are catching up fast.
The Innovation Union is a crucial investment for our future. For example, achieving our target of investing 3% of EU GDP in R&D by 2020 could create 3.7 million jobs and increase annual GDP by €795 billion by 2025.