At GE we see unprecedented opportunity for European companies and society to reboot productivity, competitiveness and prosperity, and help the region unleash investment and growth.
While Europe has emerged from the worst of the economic crisis, it continues to experience significant volatility—politically, socially and economically.
Underneath a cyclical recovery, growth is still too weak. Unemployment is twice as high as the U.S. and youth unemployment remains unacceptably high. Productivity growth is weak; political instability and nationalism grow.
Yet for its well-covered issues, I see unprecedented opportunity for European companies and society to reboot productivity, competitiveness and prosperity, and help the region unleash investment and growth.
New technological innovations are beginning to transform global industry, accelerating efficiency and productivity. In the Industrial Internet we see the next great wave of productivity both for our company and for the customers we serve. Transformations don’t come much bigger than the full application of data and analytics to machines and systems—transforming traditional industrial assets into intelligent interconnected devices.
If Europe can drive this, it can reap massive rewards in growth and job creation. I estimate that by 2025 the Industrial Internet can deliver a value of $1.7 trillion per year in additional EU GDP. And accelerating the industrial app economy will create new, high-quality European jobs.
Countries that move the fastest will gain a significant competitive advantage, and Europe must move quickly to realize its full potential. Most importantly, it must continue to invest in the workforce of the future by improving education and strengthening training programs.
But with the right conditions in place, Europe is optimally placed to lead the digital-industrial revolution.
(Top image: Courtesy of Getty Images.)
Marco Annunziata is the Chief Economist and Executive Director of Global Market Insight at GE.
All views expressed are those of the author.