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Main articles: "Euro and "Eurozone
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The "Eurozone (dark blue) represents 340 million people. The euro is the second-largest reserve currency in the world.

Beginning in the year 1999 with some "EU member states, now 19 out of 28 EU states use the "euro as official currency in a currency union. The remaining 9 states continued to use their own currency with the possibility to join the euro later. The euro is also the most widely used currency in the EU.

Since 1992 the "Maastricht treaty sets out rigid economic and fiscal "convergence criteria for the states joining the euro. Starting 1997, the "Stability and Growth Pact has been started to ensure continuing economic and fiscal "stability and convergence.

Denmark and the United Kingdom, not members of the eurozone, have special opt-outs concerning the later joining of the euro. Also, Sweden can effectively opt out by choosing when or whether to join the "European Exchange Rate Mechanism, which is the preliminary step towards joining. The remaining states are committed to join the euro through their Treaties of Accession.

Starting with "Greece in 2009, five of the 19 "eurozone states have been struggling with a sovereign debt crisis, by many called the "European debt crisis. All these states started reforms and got bailout packages ("Greece, "Ireland, "Portugal, "Spain, "Cyprus). As of 2015, all countries but Greece have recovered from their debt crisis. Other non-eurozone states also experienced a debt crisis and also went through successful bailout programmes, i.e. "Hungary, "Romania and "Latvia (the latter before it joined the eurozone).[30]

Budget[edit]

Budget of the European Union

The operation of the EU has an agreed budget of €141 billion for the year 2011, and €862 billion for the period 2007–2013,[31] this represents around 1% of the EU's GDP.

Sectors[edit]

Services[edit]

The "services sector is by far the most important sector in the European Union, making up 74.7% of GDP, compared to the "manufacturing industry with 23.8% of GDP and agriculture with only 1.5% of GDP.[32]

Agriculture[edit]

The agricultural "sector is supported by "subsidies from the European Union in the form of the "Common Agricultural Policy (CAP). In 2013 this represented approximately €45billion (less than 33% of the overall budget of €148billion) of the EU's total spending.[33] It was used originally to guarantee a "minimum price for "farmers in the EU. This is criticised as a form of "protectionism, inhibiting trade, and damaging "developing countries; one of the most vocal opponents is the UK, the second largest economy within the bloc, which has repeatedly refused to give up the annual "UK rebate unless the CAP undergoes significant reform; France, the biggest beneficiary of the CAP and the bloc's third largest economy, is its most vocal proponent. The CAP is however witnessing substantial reform. In 1985, around 70% of the EU budget was spent on agriculture. In 2011, direct aid to farmers and market-related expenditure amount to just 30% of the budget, and rural development spending to 11%. By 2011, 90% of direct support had become non-trade-distorting (not linked to production) as reforms have continued to be made to the CAP, its funding and its design.[34]

Tourism[edit]

The European Union is a major "tourist destination, attracting visitors from outside of the Union and citizens travelling inside it. Internal tourism is made more convenient by the "Schengen treaty and the euro. All citizens of the European Union are entitled to travel to any member state without the need of a "visa.

France is the "world's number one tourist destination for international visitors, followed by Spain, Italy, Germany and the United Kingdom. It is worth noting, however, that a significant proportion of international visitors to EU countries are from other member states.

London, the capital of the United Kingdom is also the world's most visited city (16.9 million visitors in 2012) and the highest in tourism receipts, shortly followed by Paris with 16 million visitors.[35]

Energy[edit]

Energy policy of the European Union
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Wind power stations in "Cerová, "Slovakia.

The European Union has uranium, coal, "oil, and "natural gas reserves. There are six "oil producers in the European Union, primarily in "North Sea oilfields. The United Kingdom is by far the largest producer; Denmark, Germany, Italy, Romania and the Netherlands all produce oil. If it is treated as a single unit, which is not conventional in the oil markets, the European Union is the 19th largest producer of "oil in the world, producing 1,241,370 (2013) "barrels a day.["citation needed]

It is the world's second largest "consumer of oil, consuming much more than it can produce, at 12,790,000 (2013) barrels a day. Much of the difference comes from Russia and the "Caspian Sea basin. All countries in the EU have committed to the "Kyoto Protocol, and the European Union is one of its biggest proponents. The European Commission published proposals for the first comprehensive "EU energy policy on 10 January 2007.["citation needed]

Renewable energy in the European Union and "Category:Energy in the European Union

Companies[edit]

The European Union's member states are the birthplace of many of the world's largest leading "multinational companies, and home to its global headquarters. Among these are distinguished companies ranked first in the world within their industry/sector, like "Allianz, which is the largest financial service provider in the world by revenue; "WPP plc which is the world's largest advertising agency by revenue; "Airbus, which is the world's largest aircraft manufacturer;[36] "Air France-KLM, which is the largest "airline company in the world in terms of total operating revenues; "Amorim, which is the world's largest "cork-processing and cork producer company; "ArcelorMittal, which is the largest steel company in the world; "Inditex which is the biggest fashion group in the world; "Groupe Danone, which has the world leadership in the "dairy products market.["citation needed]

"Anheuser-Busch InBev is the largest beer company in the world; "L'Oréal Group, which is the world's largest cosmetics and beauty company; "LVMH, which is the world's largest "luxury goods conglomerate; "Nokia Corporation, which was the world's largest manufacturer of "mobile telephones; "Royal Dutch Shell, which is one of the largest energy corporations in the world; and "Stora Enso, which is the world's largest "pulp and paper manufacturer in terms of production capacity, in terms of banking and finance the EU has some of the worlds largest notably "HSBC and "Grupo Santander, the largest bank in Europe in terms of Market Capitalisation.["citation needed]

Many other European companies rank among the world's largest companies in terms of turnover, profit, market share, number of employees or other major indicators. A considerable number of EU-based companies are ranked among the worlds' top-ten within their sector of activity. Europe is also home to many prestigious car companies such as BMW, Ferrari, Jaguar, Land Rover, Maserati, Mercedes, Porsche, as well as volume manufacturers such as Fiat, PSA group, Renault and Volkswagen.

The following is a list of the largest EU based stock market listed "companies in 2016. The ordered by "revenue in millions of US Dollars and is based on the "Fortune Global 500.

List of largest companies by revenue
Fortune top 10 E.U. corporations by revenue (2016)[37]
Rank Corporation Stock ticker Revenue $ millions Profit $ millions Employees Headquarters Industry
1 "Royal Dutch Shell RDS.A 272,156 1,939 90,000 "The Hague, Netherlands Energy
2 "Volkswagen VLKAY 236,600 -1,520 610,076 "Wolfsburg, Germany Motor Vehicles & Parts
3 "Daimler DDAIY 165,800 9,345 284,015 "Stuttgart, Germany Motor Vehicles & Parts
4 "EXOR Group EXOSF 152,591 825 303,247 "Turin, Italy Financials
5 "Total TOT 143,421 5,087 96,019 "Paris, France Energy
6 "E.ON EONGY 129,277 -7,764 56,490 "Essen, Germany Energy
7 "AXA AXAHY 129,250 6,231 98,279 "Paris, France Financials
8 "Allianz AZSEY 122,948 7,339 142,459 "Munich, Germany Financials
9 "BNP Paribas BNPQY 111,531 7,426 181,551 "Paris, France Financials
10 "Société Générale GLE 107,736 4,438 151,149 "Paris, France Financials

Economies of member states[edit]

Wealth[edit]

Below is a table showing the GDP and the GDP (nominal) per capita for the European Union and for each of its member states, ordered according to the 'Size' of their economies. The table can also be used as a rough gauge to the relative standards of living among member states, with Luxembourg the highest and Bulgaria the lowest. "Eurostat, based in Luxembourg, is the Official Statistical Office of the "European Communities releasing yearly GDP figures for the member states as well as the EU as a whole, which are regularly updated, supporting this way a measure of wealth and a base for the European Union's budgetary and economic policies. Figures are stated in euros.

Economic performance varies from state to state. The "Growth and Stability Pact governs "fiscal policy with the European Union. It applies to all member states, with specific rules which apply to the eurozone members that stipulate that each state's "deficit must not exceed 3% of GDP and its public debt must not exceed 60% of GDP. Many larger members have consistently run deficits substantially in excess of 3%, and the eurozone as a whole has a debt percentage exceeding 60% (see below).

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GDP per capita in Europe in 2014
EU member states GDP (nominal) in billions of €[38]
Member state 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
 "Austria 308.630 317.117 322.539 330.417 339.896 349.493
 "Belgium 379.106 387.500 391.712 400.805 410.351 421.974
 "Bulgaria 41.292 41.947 42.011 42.762 45.236 47.364
 "Croatia 44.708 43.934 43.487 42.978 43.847 45.557
 "Cyprus 19.731 19.467 18.118 17.567 17.637 17.901
 "Czech Republic 164.040 161.434 157.742 156.660 166.964 174.452
 "Denmark 247.880 254.578 258.742 265.232 271.786 277.336
 "Estonia 16.668 17.935 18.890 19.758 20.251 20.916
 "Finland 196.869 199.793 203.338 205.474 209.511 214.062
 "France 2,059.284 2,086.929 2,115.256 2,139.964 2,181.064 2,225.260
 "Germany 2,703.120 2,758.260 2,826.240 2,923.930 3,032.820 3,132.670
 "Greece 207.029 191.204 180.654 177.941 175.697 175.888
 "Hungary 100.820 99.086 101.483 104.953 109.674 112.399
 "Ireland 173.070 175.752 180.209 193.160 255.815 265.835
 "Italy 1,636.463 1,613.265 1,604.599 1,621.827 1,645.439 1,672.438
 "Latvia 20.202 22.058 22.829 23.631 24.368 25.018
 "Lithuania 31.275 33.348 35.002 36.590 37.330 38.631
 "Luxembourg 42.856 43.905 46.353 49.273 51.216 54.195
 "Malta 6.834 7.160 7.631 8.433 9.276 9.898
 "Netherlands 642.929 645.164 652.748 663.008 676.531 696.871
 "Poland 380.239 389.369 394.721 410.990 429.794 424.581
 "Portugal 176.167 168.398 170.269.3 173.079 179.540 185.035
 "Romania 133.306 133.511 144.253 150.357 159.964 169.578
 "Slovakia 70.627 72.703 74.170 75.946 78.686 80.958
 "Slovenia 36.896 36.002 35.917 37.332 38.570 39.769
 "Spain 1,070.413 1,039.758 1,025.634 1,037.025 1,075.639 1,113.851
 "Sweden 404.945 423.341 435.752 432.691 447.009 462.417
 "United Kingdom 1,876.151 2,065.737 2,048.328 2,260.804 2,580.064 2,367.596
 "European Union 13,192.554 13,448.556 13,558.630 14,002.583 14,714.003 14,819.583
"Eurozone 9,747.693 9,780.314 9,874.278 10,098.565 10,459.614 10,733.164
EU member states GDP (nominal) per capita in €[38]
Member state 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 Total
GDP/capita growth in %
2011-2016
 "Austria 36,800 37,600 38,000 38,700 39,400 40,000 11.12
 "Belgium 34,500 35,100 35,300 35,900 36,600 37,400 8.41
 "Bulgaria 5,600 5,700 5,800 5,900 6,300 6,600 17.86
 "Croatia 10,400 10,300 10,200 10,200 10,400 10,900 4.81
 "Cyprus 23,200 22,500 21,000 20,600 20,800 21,000 − 9.48
 "Czech Republic 15,600 15,400 15,000 14,900 15,800 16,500 17.86
 "Denmark 44,500 45,500 46,100 47,000 47,800 48,400 8.77
 "Estonia 12,500 13,500 14,300 15,000 15,400 15,900 27.21
 "Finland 36,500 36,900 37,400 37,600 38,200 39,000 6.85
 "France 31,500 31,800 32,100 32,300 32,800 33,400 6.04
 "Germany 33,700 34,300 35,000 36,100 37,100 37,900 12.47
 "Greece 18,600 17,300 16,500 16,300 16,200
 "Hungary 10,100 10,000 10,300 10,600 11,100 11,500 13.87
 "Ireland 37,800 38,300 39,200 41,900 55,100 56,800 50.27
 "Italy 27,300 26,700 26,500 26,700 27,100 27,600 1.1
 "Latvia 9,800 10,800 11,300 11,800 12,300 12,800 30.62
 "Lithuania 10,500 11,200 11,800 12,500 12,900 13,500 28.58
 "Luxembourg 82,500 82,600 85,500 88,300 89,900 92,900 12.61
 "Malta 16,400 17,100 18,000 19,700 21,500 22,700 38.42
 "Netherlands 38,500 38,500 38,900 39,300 40,000 40,900 6.23
 "Poland 9,900 10,100 10,300 10,700 11,200 11,000 11.12
 "Portugal 16,700 16,000 16,300 16,600 17,300 17,900 7.19
 "Romania 6,600 6,700 7,200 7,600 8,100 8,600 30.31
 "Slovakia 13,100 13,400 13,700 14,000 14,500 14,900 13.75
 "Slovenia 18,000 17,500 17,400 18,100 18,700 19,300 7.23
 "Spain 22,900 22,200 22,000 22,300 23,300 24,000 4.81
 "Sweden 42,900 44,500 45,400 44,600 45,600 46,600 8.63
 "United Kingdom 29,600 32,400 32,000 35,000 39,600 36,100 21.96
 "European Union 26,100 26,600 26,700 27,600 28,900 29,000 11.12
"Eurozone 29,500 29,500 29,700 30,100 30,900 31,500 6.78
 "Serbia[39] 4,600 4,400 4,800 4,700 4,700
 "Montenegro[40]
EU member states "Gini coefficients (wealth distribution of a nation's residents)[41]
Member state 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 Total
Total Gini coefficient evolution in %
2011-2016
 "Austria 27.4 27.6 27.0 27.6 27.2
 "Belgium 26.3 26.5 25.9 25.9 26.2
 "Bulgaria 35.0 33.6 35.4 35.4 37.0
 "Croatia 31.2 30.9 30.9 30.2 30.6
 "Cyprus 29.2 31.0 32.4 34.8 33.6
 "Czech Republic 25.2 24.9 24.6 25.1 25.0
 "Denmark 26.6 26.5 26.8 27.7 27.4
 "Estonia 31.9 32.5 32.9 35.6 34.8
 "Finland 25.8 25.9 25.4 25.6 25.2 25.4 -1.55
 "France 30.8 30.5 30.1 29.2 29.2
 "Germany 29.0 28.3 29.7 30.7 30.1
 "Greece 33.5 34.3 34.4 34.5 34.2
 "Hungary 26.9 27.2 28.3 28.6 28.2 28.2 +4.84
 "Ireland 29.8 30.5 30.7 31.1 29.8
 "Italy 32.5 32.4 32.8 32.4 32.4
 "Latvia 35.1 35.7 35.2 35.5 35.4 34.5 -1.7
 "Lithuania 33.0 32.0 34.6 35.0 37.9
 "Luxembourg 27.2 28.0 30.4 28.7 28.5
 "Malta 27.2 27.1 27.9 27.7 28.1
 "Netherlands 25.8 25.4 25.1 26.2 26.7
 "Poland 31.1 30.9 30.7 30.8 30.6
 "Portugal 34.2 34.5 34.2 34.5 34.0
 "Romania 33.5 34.0 34.6 35.0 37.4
 "Slovakia 25.7 25.3 24.2 26.1 23.7
 "Slovenia 23.8 23.7 24.4 25.0 24.5
 "Spain 34.0 34.2 33.7 34.7 34.6
 "Sweden 24.4 24.8 24.9 25.4 24.2
 "United Kingdom 33.0 31.3 30.2 31.6 32.4
 "European Union 30.8 30.5 30.5 30.9 31.0
"Eurozone 30.6 30.5 30.7 31.0 30.8
 "Serbia[42] 38.0 38.6 38.2
 "Montenegro[43]

Economic growth[edit]

The EU's share of "gross world product (GWP) is stable at around one fifth.[44]

The twelve new member states of the European Union have enjoyed a higher average percentage growth rate than their elder members of the EU. "Slovakia has the highest GDP growth in the period 2005–2015 among all countries of the European Union (See "Tatra Tiger). Notably the "Baltic states have achieved high GDP growth, with "Latvia topping 11%, close to China, the world leader at 9% on average for the past 25 years (though these gains have been in great part cancelled by the "late-2000s recession).

Reasons for this growth include government commitments to stable "monetary policy, export-oriented trade policies, low "flat-tax rates and the utilisation of relatively cheap labour. In 2015 "Ireland had the highest GDP growth of all the states in EU (26.3%). The current map of EU growth is one of huge regional variation, with the larger economies suffering from stagnant growth and the new nations enjoying sustained, robust economic growth.

Although EU28 GDP is on the increase, the percentage of "gross world product is decreasing because of the emergence of economies such as China, India and Brazil.

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Population and GDP per capita of European countries (2010)
EU member states GDP growth rates[2]
Member state 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 Total
growth
2008-2016
 "Austria 1.5 − 3.8 1.9 2.8 0.7 0.1 0.6 1.0 1.5 6.3
 "Belgium 0.7 − 2.3 2.7 1.8 0.1 − 0.1 1.7 1.5 1.2 7.3
 "Bulgaria 6.0 − 3.6 1.3 1.9 0.0 0.9 1.3 3.6 3.4 14.8
 "Croatia 2.1 − 7.4 − 1.7 − 0.3 − 2.2 − 1.1 − 0.5 1.6 2.9 − 9.8
 "Cyprus 3.9 − 1.8 1.3 0.3 − 3.2 − 6.0 − 1.5 1.7 2.8 − 2.5
 "Czech Republic 2.7 − 4.8 2.3 2.0 − 0.8 − 0.5 2.7 4.5 2.4 10.5
 "Denmark − 0.5 − 4.9 1.9 1.3 0.2 0.9 1.7 1.6 1.1 3.3
 "Estonia − 5.4 − 14.7 2.3 7.6 4.3 1.4 2.8 1.4 1.6 1.3
 "Finland 0.7 − 8.3 3.0 2.6 − 1.4 − 0.8 − 0.6 0.3 1.4 − 3.1
 "France 0.2 − 2.9 2.0 2.1 0.2 0.6 0.6 1.3 1.2 5.3
 "Germany 1.1 − 5.6 4.1 3.7 0.5 0.5 1.6 1.7 1.9 9.5
 "Greece − 0.3 − 4.3 − 5.5 − 9.1 − 7.3 − 3.2 0.4 − 0.2 0.0 − 29.5
 "Hungary 0.9 − 6.6 0.7 1.7 − 1.6 2.1 4.0 3.1 2.0 6.3
 "Ireland − 4.4 − 4.6 2.0 0.0 − 1.1 1.1 8.5 26.3 5.2 33
 "Italy − 1.1 − 5.5 1.7 0.6 − 2.8 − 1.7 0.1 0.7 0.9 − 7.1
 "Latvia − 3.6 − 14.3 − 3.8 6.2 4.0 2.9 2.1 2.7 2.0 − 1.8
 "Lithuania 2.6 − 14.8 1.6 6.0 3.8 3.5 3.5 1.8 2.3 9.3
 "Luxembourg − 0.8 − 5.4 5.8 2.0 0.0 4.2 4.7 3.5 4.2 18.2
 "Malta 3.3 − 2.5 3.5 1.4 2.7 4.6 8.4 7.4 5.0 33.8
 "Netherlands 1.7 − 3.8 1.4 1.7 − 1.1 − 0.2 1.4 2.0 2.1 5.2
 "Poland 4.2 2.8 3.6 5.0 1.6 1.4 3.3 3.9 2.8 28.6
 "Portugal 0.2 − 3.0 1.9 − 1.8 − 4.0 − 1.1 0.9 1.6 2.0 − 8.3
 "Romania 8.5 − 7.1 − 0.8 1.1 0.6 3.5 3.1 3.9 4.8 17.6
 "Slovakia 5.6 − 5.4 5.0 2.8 1.7 1.5 2.6 3.8 3.3 20.9
 "Slovenia 3.3 − 7.8 1.2 0.6 − 2.7 − 1.1 3.1 2.3 2.5 1.4
 "Spain 1.1 − 3.6 0.0 − 1.0 − 2.9 − 1.7 1.4 3.2 3.2 − 0.3
 "Sweden − 0.6 − 5.2 6.0 2.7 − 0.3 1.2 2.6 4.1 3.3 13.8
 "United Kingdom − 0.6 − 4.3 1.9 1.5 1.3 1.9 3.1 2.2 1.8 8.8
 "European Union 0.4 − 4.4 2.1 1.7 − 0.5 0.2 1.6 2.2 1.9 5.1
"Eurozone 0.4 − 4.5 2.1 1.5 − 0.9 − 0.3 1.2 2.0 1.7 3.2
 "Serbia[45] 5.4 − 3.1 0.6 1.4 − 1.0 2.6 − 1.8 0.8 2.8 7.7
 "Montenegro[46] − 2.7 3.5 1.8 3.4

Labour market[edit]

The EU seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 8.3% in October 2016.[47] The euro area unemployment rate was 9.8%.[47] Among the member states, the lowest unemployment rates were recorded in the Czech Republic (3.8%), Germany (4.1%) and Malta (4.9%), and the highest in Spain (19.2%) and Greece (23.0% in October 2016).[47]

The following table shows the history of the unemployment rate for all European Union member states :

Unemployment rate by country (base month is March of each year)
Unemployment[47] 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 Last available
 "Austria 4.1 5.0 4.9 4.7 4.6 5.4 5.6 5.6 5.9 5.7[48]
 "Belgium 6.7 8.0 8.5 6.9 7.1 8.3 8.5 8.7 8.1 7.0[48]
 "Denmark 3.2 5.3 7.6 7.4 7.7 7.1 6.6 6.4 6.0 6.4[48]
 "Finland 6.3 7.6 8.5 7.9 7.6 8.1 8.4 9.2 9.0 8.7[48]
 "France 7.2 8.9 9.3 9.1 9.5 10.3 10.2 10.3 10.1 10.0[48]
 "Germany 7.7 7.6 7.3 6.1 5.4 5.3 5.1 4.8 4.3 3.9[48]
 "Greece 8.2 9.1 11.6 16.0 22.7 27.1 26.9 26.0 23.8 23.5[49]
 "Ireland 5.2 11.1 13.2 14.3 15.0 13.6 12.0 9.8 8.3 6.4[50]
 "Italy 6.4 7.6 8.4 8.0 10.5 11.9 12.7 12.4 11.5 11.5[48]
 "Luxembourg 4.4 5.4 4.6 4.7 5.1 5.7 6.0 6.4 6.4 6.1[48]
 "Netherlands 3.6 3.9 5.1 4.8 5.5 6.9 7.8 7.0 6.4 5.3[48]
 "Portugal 8.6 10.1 11.6 12.5 15.0 17.2 14.7 13.2 12.0 10.0[48]
 "Spain 9.4 17.4 19.5 20.7 23.9 26.3 25.2 23.0 20.3 18.0[48]
 "Sweden 5.8 7.8 8.8 7.9 7.5 8.3 8.0 7.5 7.2 6.8[48]
 "United Kingdom 5.2 7.3 7.9 7.7 8.1 7.7 6.6 5.4 4.9 4.6[51]
 "Bulgaria 6.0 6.3 9.9 11.2 12.1 13.0 11.9 10.0 8.1 6.7[48]
 "Croatia 9.1 8.9 10.8 13.7 15.5 16.5 17.7 16.6 13.9 11.6[48]
 "Cyprus 3.8 4.6 6.7 6.9 10.7 14.9 16.2 16.2 13.1 12.9[48]
 "Czech Republic 4.4 5.9 7.7 6.8 6.9 7.2 6.5 5.6 4.0 3.4[48]
 "Estonia 4.3 11.9 19.2 14.0 11.1 9.1 7.9 6.7 6.4 5.8[49]
 "Hungary 7.5 9.6 11.4 11.1 11.3 10.6 7.9 7.3 5.7 4.3[49]
 "Latvia 6.4 14.8 20.4 16.7 15.9 11.9 11.1 9.8 8.6 9.3[48]
 "Lithuania 4.1 11.6 17.8 16.5 14.0 12.1 11.5 9.3 8.4 8.3[48]
 "Malta 5.9 6.6 6.9 6.5 6.5 6.2 5.9 5.7 4.9 4.1[48]
 "Poland 7.2 7.9 10.0 9.4 9.8 10.6 9.7 7.8 6.4 5.3[48]
 "Romania 5.6 6.0 7.3 6.8 7.0 6.9 7.0 6.7 6.4 5.4[48]
 "Slovakia 10.2 10.7 14.9 13.6 13.7 14.1 13.6 11.9 10.1 8.6[48]
 "Slovenia 4.6 5.3 6.9 8.1 7.9 10.8 10.1 9.2 8.3 7.8[48]
 "European Union 6.8 8.6 9.7 9.5 10.3 10.9 10.5 9.7 8.8 8.0[48]
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Unemployment rate by country in the EU in September 2016.
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Unemployment rates in selected European countries and in the EU28 between 01/2004 and 04/2014.
Labour productivity (GDP per hour worked - USD, current prices, current PPPs, 2015 - "OECD)
Productivity[52] 2015
 "Austria 61.89
 "Belgium 72.14
 "Denmark 69.73
 "Finland 56.46
 "France 67.61
 "Germany 66.63
 "Greece 34.93
 "Ireland 91.88
 "Italy 53.59
 "Luxembourg 95.09
 "Netherlands 67.17
 "Portugal 36.00
 "Spain 51.57
 "Sweden 60.54
 "United Kingdom 52.43
 "Bulgaria not in OECD
 "Croatia not in OECD
 "Cyprus not in OECD
 "Czech Republic 39.16
 "Estonia 33.04
 "Hungary 34.58
 "Latvia 29.05
 "Lithuania not in OECD
 "Malta not in OECD
 "Poland 30.69
 "Romania not in OECD
 "Slovakia 40.82
 "Slovenia 41.54
 "European Union -

Public finance[edit]

Public finance of the States of the European Union, with limits according to the Maastricht criterion.
Member state Public deficit as % of GDP (2015)
(E.U. limit : -3%)
[53]
Public debt as % of GDP (2015)
(E.U. limit : 60%)
[54]
"HICP inflation rate (2016)
Max. 0.7% (as of 30 Apr 2016)
[55]
Long-term interest rate (01/17)
Max. 4.0% (as of 30 Apr 2016)
[56][57]
 "Austria − 1.0 85.5 1.0 0.57
 "Belgium − 2.5 105.8 1.8 0.70
 "Bulgaria − 1.7 26.0 − 1.3 1.77
 "Croatia − 3.3 86.6 − 0.6 2.80
 "Cyprus − 1.1 107.5 − 1.2 3.45
 "Czech Republic − 0.6 40.3 0.6 0.47
 "Denmark − 1.7 40.4 0.0 0.37
 "Estonia 0.1 10.1 0.8 (n.c.)
 "Finland − 2.8 63.6 0.4 0.50
 "France − 3.5 96.2 0.3 0.86
 "Germany 0.7 71.2 0.4 0.25
 "Greece − 7.5 177.4 0.0 7.04
 "Hungary − 1.6 74.7 0.4 3.40
 "Ireland − 1.9 78.2 − 0.2 0.99
 "Italy − 2.6 132.3 − 0.1 1.99
 "Latvia − 1.3 36.3 0.1 0.89
 "Lithuania − 0.2 42.7 0.7 0.31
 "Luxembourg 1.6 22.1 0.0 0.43
 "Malta − 1.4 64.0 0.9 1.17
 "Netherlands − 1.9 65.1 0.1 0.48
 "Poland − 2.6 51.1 − 0.2 3.68
 "Portugal − 4.4 129.0 0.6 3.95
 "Romania − 0.8 37.9 − 1.1 3.75
 "Slovakia − 2.7 52.5 −0.5 1.03
 "Slovenia − 2.7 83.1 − 0.2 0.99
 "Spain − 5.1 99.8 − 0.3 1.46
 "Sweden 0.2 43.9 1.1 0.65
 "United Kingdom − 4.3 89.1 0.7 1.38
 "European Union − 2.4 85.0 0.3 1.34
"Eurozone − 2.1 90.4 0.2 1.10

Trade[edit]

List of the largest trading partners of the European Union

The European Union is the largest exporter in the world[58] and as of 2008 the largest importer of goods and services.[59] Internal trade between the member states is aided by the removal of barriers to trade such as "tariffs and "border controls. In the "eurozone, trade is helped by not having any currency differences to deal with amongst most members.[60]

The "European Union Association Agreement does something similar for a much larger range of countries, partly as a so-called soft approach ('a carrot instead of a stick') to influence the politics in those countries. The European Union represents all its members at the "World Trade Organization (WTO), and acts on behalf of member states in any disputes. When the EU negotiates trade related agreement outside the WTO framework, the subsequent agreement must be approved by each individual EU member.[60]

""
""
  EU
  Top 10 trading partners (2010)
  Top 11–20 trading partners (2010)
""
""
EU imports, exports and "balance of trade in "goods from 2007 to 2013 (in "billions of euro)
Main trading partners (2015)[61]
Rank Partners Imports (million euro) % (of total) Exports (million euro) % (of total) Total trade (million euro) % (of total)
-  "European Union 1,724,867 100% 1,789,063 100% 3,513,929 100%
1  "United States 246,211 14,3% 369,549 20,7% 615,760 17,5%
2  "China 350,257 20,3% 170,399 9,5% 520,657 14,8%
3   "Switzerland 102,299 5,9% 150,833 8,4% 253,132 7,2%
4  "Russia 135,876 7,9% 73,905 4,1% 209,781 6,0%
5  "Turkey 61,574 3,6% 78,959 4,4% 140,533 4,0%
6  "Norway 74,313 4,3% 48,867 2,7% 123,180 3,5%
7  "Japan 59,726 3,5% 56,572 3,2% 116,298 3,3%
8  "South Korea 42,327 2,5% 47,882 2,7% 90,209 2,6%
9  "India 39,449 2,3% 37,919 2,1% 77,368 2,2%
10  "Brazil 30,879 1,8% 34,588 1,9% 65,468 1,9%
11  "Canada 28,223 1,6% 35,210 2,0% 63,433 1,8%
12  "Saudi Arabia 21,506 1,2% 40,248 2,2% 61,754 1,8%
13  "United Arab Emirates 9,364 0,5% 48,480 2,7% 57,844 1,6%
14  "Mexico 19,675 1,1% 33,657 1,9% 53,333 1,5%
15  "Hong Kong 14,221 0,8% 35,382 2,0% 49,603 1,4%
16  "Singapore 18,898 1,1% 29,690 1,7% 48,588 1,4%
17  "South Africa 19,345 1,1% 25,454 1,4% 44,798 1,3%
18  "Taiwan 25,487 1,5% 18,456 1,0% 43,943 1,3%
19  "Algeria 20,868 1,2% 22,289 1,2% 43,157 1,2%
20  "Australia 9,555 0,6% 31,634 1,8% 41,190 1,2%
21  "Vietnam 29,958 1,7% 8,438 0,5% 38,396 1,1%
22  "Malaysia 22,721 1,3% 13,354 0,7% 36,074 1,0%
23  "Thailand 19,537 1,1% 13,369 0,7% 32,906 0,9%
24  "Israel 13,259 0,8% 18,979 1,1% 32,238 0,9%
25  "Morocco 12,525 0,7% 18,186 1,0% 30,710 0,9%
26  "Nigeria 18,435 1,1% 10,654 0,6% 29,080 0,8%
27  "Egypt 7,235 0,4% 20,444 1,1% 27,678 0,8%
28  "Ukraine 12,783 0,7% 13,921 0,8% 26,703 0,8%
29  "Indonesia 15,338 0,9% 9,992 0,6% 25,330 0,7%
30  "Kazakhstan 16,250 0,9% 6,212 0,3% 22,461 0,6%
Trade with partner country groupings(2012)[61]
Rank Partner region Imports (million euro) % (of total) Exports (million euro) % (of total) Total trade (million euro) % (of total)
- Total EU 1,791,727 100% 1,686,774 100% 3,478,501 100%
- "ACP 99,196 5,5% 86,652 5,1% 185,848 5,3%
- "Andean Community 17,728 1,0% 11,738 0,7% 29,467 0,8%
- "ASEAN 100,035 5,6% 81,324 4,8% 181,360 5,2%
- "BRIC 577,513 32,2% 345,198 20,5% 922,711 26,5%
- "CACM 9,546 0,5% 5,354 0,3% 14,900 0,4%
- "EU Candidate Countries 55,386 3,1% 89,654 5,3% 145,040 4,2%
- "CIS 273,505 15,3% 172,641 10,2% 446,1460 12,8%
- "EFTA 208,739 11,7% 186,222 11,0% 394,961 11,4%
- "Latin America Countries 109,978 6,1% 110,297 6,5% 220,275 6,3%
- "MEDA(Excl. EU and Turkey) 73,341 4,1% 92,812 5,5% 166,153 4,8%
- "Mercosur 49,196 2,7% 50,266 3,0% 99,461 2,9%
- "NAFTA 255,657 14,3% 351,090 20,8% 606,746 17,4%

Regional variation[edit]

List of NUTS regions in the European Union by GDP

Comparing the richest areas of the EU can be a difficult task. This is because the "NUTS 1 & 2 regions are not homogenous, some of them being very large regions, such as NUTS-1 "Hesse (21,100 km²) or NUTS-1 "Île-de-France (12,011 km²), whilst other NUTS regions are much smaller, for example NUTS-1 "Hamburg (755 km²) or NUTS-1 "Greater London (1,580 km²). An extreme example is Finland, which is divided for historical reasons into mainland Finland with 5.3 million inhabitants and "Åland, an autonomous archipelago with a population of 27,000, or about the population of a small Finnish city.

One problem with this data is that some areas, including "Greater London, are subject to a large number of "commuters coming into the area, thereby artificially inflating the figures. It has the effect of raising GDP but not altering the number of people living in the area, inflating the GDP per capita figure. Similar problems can be produced by a large number of tourists visiting the area. The data is used to define regions that are supported with financial aid in programs such as the "European Regional Development Fund. The decision to delineate a "Nomenclature of Territorial Units for Statistics (NUTS) region is to a large extent arbitrary (i.e. not based on objective and uniform criteria across Europe), and is decided at European level (See also: "Regions of the European Union).

NUTS-1 and NUTS-2 regions[edit]

List of countries by GDP (PPP) per capita, "List of metropolitan areas in the European Union by GDP, and "First-level NUTS of the European Union

The 10 "NUTS-1 and NUTS-2 regions with the highest GDP per capita are almost all, except two, in the first fifteen-member states: "Prague and "Bratislava are the only ones in the "13 new member states that joined in May 2004, January 2007 and July 2013. The leading regions in the ranking of NUTS-2 regional GDP per inhabitant in 2015 were "Inner London-West in the United Kingdom (580% of the average), the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg (264%) and "Hamburg in Germany (206%). Figures for these three regions, however, are artificially inflated by the commuters who do not reside in these regions ("Net commuter inflows in these regions push up production to a level that could not be achieved by the resident active population on its own. The result is that GDP per inhabitant appears to be overestimated in these regions and underestimated in regions with commuter outflows."[63]).

Another example of artificial inflation is Groningen. The calculated GDP per capita is very high because of the large natural gas reserves in this region, but Groningen is one of the poorest parts in the Netherlands. Among the 46 NUTS-2 regions exceeding the 150% level, five were in Germany, four in the United Kingdom, two each in the Netherlands and in Austria, one each in Belgium, the Czech republic, Denmark, France, Slovakia and Sweden, as well as in the single region Grand Duchy of Luxembourg. The NUTS Regulation lays down a minimum population size of 3 million and a maximum size of 7 million for the average NUTS-1 region, whereas a minimum of 800,000 and a maximum of 3 million for NUTS-2 regions.¹[64] This definition, however, is not respected by Eurostat. E.g.: the "région of "Île-de-France, with 11.6 million inhabitants, is treated as a NUTS-2 region, while the "state "Free Hanseatic City of Bremen, with only 664,000 inhabitants, is treated as a NUTS-1 region.

Source: Eurostat[63]

Among the ten lowest regions in the ranking in 2015 most were in Bulgaria and Romania, with the lowest figure recorded in "Severozapaden in Bulgaria. Among the 19 regions below the 50% level, five were in Bulgaria, four each in Hungary and Poland,three in Romania, two in Greece and one in France.[63]

Source: Eurostat[63]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

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  64. ^ [1]
  • ^ Cells shaded in green indicate forecast figure
  • ^ One region may be classified by Eurostat as a NUTS-1, NUTS-2 as well as a NUTS-3 region. Several NUTS-1 regions are also classified as NUTS-2 regions such as Brussels-Capital or Ile-de-France. Many countries are only classified as a single NUTS-1 and a single NUTS-2 region such as Latvia, Lithuania, Luxemburg and (although over 3 million inhabitants) Denmark.
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The following links are used for the GDP growth and GDP totals ("IMF):

External links[edit]

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