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Denmark achieves Barcelona objective and innovation on the rise

April 26, 2011
Denmark has achieved the Barcelona objective of investing at least 3 percent of GDP in research and development – and reached the objective a year ahead of schedule.

In 2009, Denmark invested 3.09 percent of GDP in private and public research and development. These latest figures from Statistics Denmark show that Denmark has increased its R&D investment – up from 2.8 percent in 2008.

Denmark is the first EU country, which wasn’t achieving the Barcelona objective, to reach the target. Sweden and Finland had already achieved the objective from its inception in 2002.

The financial crisis's impact on Danish GDP between 2008 and 2009 was not the reason for reaching the objective. In fact, investment in R&D in both the public and private sectors increased significantly despite the crisis.

R&D investment by the public sector accounted for 0.99 percent of GDP in 2009 compared to 0.84 percent in 2008.

Meanwhile investments in R&D by the private sector have increased steadily, from 1.63 percent of GDP in 2006 to 1.96 percent in 2008 and 2.1 percent in 2009. Private R&D investment totalled DKK 34.7 billion in 2009.

The Danish Agency for Science, Technology and Innovation has conducted annual projections since the financial crisis in 2009, predicting the level of private R&D investment. The new figures confirm the projections of increased investment and show that private investment has increased even more than expected in 2010.

Innovation increases significantly

Denmark's share of innovative businesses has increased significantly between 2007 and 2009.

New figures from Statistics Denmark show that 44 percent of all businesses were innovative in the period 2007-2009 – an increase from 41 percent in the previous period. This is the first time the share of innovative businesses has increased since 2004.

The new statistics echo the same trend shown by the European Commission’s European Innovation Scoreboard 2010, which ranked Denmark in second place of the most innovative countries in Europe. This ranking was up from the previous 5th position in the 2009 scoreboard.

The Danish Agency for Science, Technology and Innovation projection for 2010 also forecasts the continued innovation trend between 2009 and 2010.

Further information

Further comment from Science Minister Charlotte Sahl-Madsen can be obtained via head of communications Anders Frandsen, tel: +45 7231 8008 or email: anf@vtu.dk

Further information regarding the statistics can be obtained from Thomas Alslev Christensen, Head of Division at the Danish Agency for Science, Technology and Innovation, tel: +45 7231 8410 or email: tac@fi.dk

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