This is how the European Commission’s DG CONNECT describes the internet’s contributions to European industry. It’s a bold statement, but the latest figures back it up.



The total size of the European internet economy reached €498 billion in 2010. This is the equivalent of 4.1 % of EU GDP, with leading ICT countries like Germany, UK, France and Italy accounting for some 75 % of this total.

Leading contributors to Europe’s internet economy 2010

Predicted European internet industry revenues 2010-2014

Estimated size and growth of EU internet economy 2015-2020

The internet knows no borders and its potential for growth is equally boundless … In fact, the EU’s internet economy is projected to grow seven times faster than overall GDP over the coming years.


Europe is strongest in the more mature segments of the internet industry. Providers of telecom services, for example, continue to dominate Europe’s internet sector. This has helped to establish Europe as a leading player in infrastructure, although there is a downside …

EU internet industry is growing more slowly
and tends to be less globalised than US and Japan-based competitors
mobile and cloud computing are still up for grabs
but standards, trust, cross-border issues … all need to be tackled

The internet, or more importantly the ‘Future Internet’, provides an unmissable opportunity, as part of the EU’s Digital Agenda, to help the continent recover faster from the economic crisis through innovation-led growth and the creation of new and better jobs for Europeans.

But harvesting the fruits of the Future Internet means tackling the remaining barriers to EU competitiveness first.


Access to human resources …
Access to capital resources …
Competition & cooperation


To overcome many of the barriers, stakeholders in both the private and public sectors need to work more closely together …

This leads us to the last bold statement about the internet’s major contributions to the economy. Today, it is no doubt a powerful contributor, but perhaps not yet pervasive in the full sense of the word.

Partnerships between industry and government are essential to deliver the right conditions for the benefits of Future Internet developments – like faster, cheaper mobile internet, augmented reality and the Internet of Things – to become truly widespread in Europe.


This is where the EU’s Future Internet Public- Private Partnership (FI-PPP) scheme – a European programme for internet-enabled innovation – helps by further accelerating the development and adoption of FI technologies.

At first it seems like such ‘digital development’ erodes jobs, but after an initial drop, employment picks up substantially, thanks to productivity gains in traditional industries and completely new business opportunities.

Projected cumulative GDP effect of a successful FI-PPP and its potential successor (realistic scenario)


Under ideal conditions, effects unleashed by the FI-PPP could contribute up to €28 billion per year to the EU economy. This corresponds to 0.24 % of EU GDP, which is no small change on top of previously mentioned growth estimates.

The projected effects of FI-PPP’s successor could be even higher!

SO …

The Future Internet is set to make
an even greater contribution to the
EU economy … You’ll see!


(Article from net-innov future magazine (2014)).