June 22, 2021 user
Romania and Bulgaria least innovative EU member states - EU Commission
Photo: Antonia Dobreva / License: All rights reserved

Romania and Bulgaria rank lowest among EU member states in terms of performance of national innovation systems, the European Commission said.

Romania and Bulgaria were part of the ’emerging innovators’ list of the latest edition of the Commission’s annual European Innovation Scoreboard, together with Croatia, the report, which was published on Monday, showed. Emerging innovators are countries that show a performance level below 70% of the EU average, according to the Commission.

On average, the innovation performance of the EU has increased by 12.5 percentage points (pp) since 2014, the report read.

Elsewhere in Southeast Europe (SEE), Greece and Slovenia were ranked in the ‘moderate innovators’ side of the list, which also represents countries below the EU average.

Innovation performance between 2014 and 2021 improved for all 27 member states, the Commission said. The performance of Bulgaria and Romania went up 7.2 pp and 4.1 pp, respectively. Among EU members in SEE, the performance of Greece improved the most – by 25.9 pp, followed by Croatia with 21.5 pp growth, while Slovenia improved the least – by 2.8 pp.

Among non-EU member states in SEE, Bosnia and Herzegovina was ranked lowest, followed by North Macedonia, Montenegro, Turkey and Serbia. All five countries were included in the ’emerging innovators’ list.

The performance of Serbia, relative to the EU in 2014 has increased by 16.7%, of North Macedonia by 14.4pp, for Montenegro by 7.8% and for Turkey by 0.3%. For Bosnia and Herzegovina performance relative to the EU in 2014 decreased by 1.2%.

The annual European Innovation Scoreboard provides a comparative assessment of the research and innovation performance of EU member states and selected third countries, and the relative strengths and weaknesses of their research and innovation systems. It helps countries assess areas in which they need to concentrate their efforts in order to boost their innovation performance.

Most of the data used in this report are not recent enough to capture the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, the Commission noted.

Following are the scores of EU member states from SEE:

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