News Column

EU Bloc Trails South Korea, US in Innovation

March 26, 2013

Sweden is the most innovative state in the European Union, the bloc's executive said Tuesday, adding however that South Korea, the United States and Japan still led the way.

The European Commission's innovation scoreboard measured factors such as research investment, entrepreneurship and the economic benefits of innovation across EU member states.

It found that Germany, Denmark and Finland were also leaders when it came to innovation, while Latvia, Romania and Bulgaria were bottom of the list.

Taken as a 27-member bloc however, the EU still trailed Japan, the US and global leader South Korea, according to the commission.

Industry Commisioner Antonio Tajani said that the EU's economic crisis had "negatively impacted innovation activity in some parts of Europe," adding that it was crucial to regain lost ground in order to remain globally competitive.

Progress had been made last year, for example, by establishing a single EU patent and new rules for venture capital funds, according to Research and Innovation Commissioner Maire Geoghegan-Quinn, but she said more was needed to avoid an "innovation divide" in Europe.

"Innovation should now be at the heart of all member states' policy agendas," she said.

Source: Copyright 2013 dpa Deutsche Presse-Agentur GmbH

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