A competitive economy is an economy with a sustained high rate of productivity growth.
Since the Lisbon Strategy set out to make Europe the most competitive and dynamic economy in the world, competitiveness has become one of the political priorities of the Union. European industry needs to be competitive if the Community is to achieve its economic, social and environmental goals and thus ensure an improving quality of life for Europe's citizens. In its efforts to promote competitiveness, the Union also seeks to adapt the European economy to structural change, relocation of industrial activity to emerging economies, redeployment of jobs and resources to new industrial sectors and the risk of a process of deindustrialisation.
The Union's competitiveness is determined by productivity growth and thus depends on the performance and the future of European industry, an especially on its capacity for structural adjustment. To be competitive, the Union must outperform in terms of research and innovation, information and communication technologies, entrepreneurship, competition, education and training.
Across-the-board economic analysis and detailed analysis of the different sectors are needed to support the Union's action to boost competitiveness.