The European Commission has much reduced its previous emphasis on raising R&D spending to 3 per cent of GDP in its annual update on progress towards the EU’s economic and social targets for 2020.
In its annual review of the EU’s economic and social situation, published on 27 February, the Commission makes no mention of the 3 per cent target, except in an annex. This repeated the Commission’s assessment from last year that the target is “unlikely to be met”.
This is in stark contrast to 2018, when the Commission strongly encouraged member states to increase their R&D spending. “The goal of 3 per cent of GDP investment in R&D is far from sight and no efforts should be spared to reach it in time,” it said last year.