European policymakers are struggling to identify economic policies that can create new jobs and return their economies to a stable growth path. The aim of this report is to examine how Europe can gain a competitive edge in new products and services with higher value added that can form the basis for future growth and jobs. In light of limited fiscal and political capital, the crucial issue is prioritisation in terms of technologies, regions and policies.
Given global decarbonisation concerns, the wide array of low-carbon technologies offers significant growth potential. Some EU countries have already been able to develop a comparative advantage in wind turbines and electric vehicles, though the EU is less effective at exporting solar panels and batteries. Based on patenting activities we, however, see some potential – maybe not for entire countries but for some regions – to further specialise in all of these four low-carbon technologies.