EU economies hit by collapse in investment

EU economies hit by collapse in investment
Capital investment in 24 of the EU’s 28 member states has fallen dramatically over the past ten years, according to data from statistical agency Eurostat.

Investment decreased on average by 2.3 percent, falling to 20.1 percent of GDP last year. It stood at 22.4 percent from 2007 to 2017 period. Countries in Europe’s east and south, which were more vulnerable to the crisis, experienced the biggest drops in investment in the years following the crisis, Eurostat reports.

Statistics showed that only three EU countries have seen their investments increase. Those are Sweden (from 23.9 percent of GDP in 2007 to 24.9 percent), Austria by 0.6 percent and Germany by 0.2 percent.

Last year, all EU countries invested around €3 billion ($3.5 billion) in public and private investments. The construction industry accounted for nearly half of investments, while machinery, equipment and weapons systems accounted for 31 percent. Investments into intellectual property products were 19 percent.

The EU’s investment fund (the European Fund for Strategic Investments), which was set up in the aftermath of the financial crisis to address the investment deficit, has mobilized €284 billion ($335 billion) to date. It plans to raise €500 billion ($590 billion) by 2020.

According to the European Investment Bank’s website “it aims to mobilize private investments in projects which are strategically important for the EU.”

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