For the past decade, the EU has lagged the OECD in terms of average productivity growth, a picture that is not improved by demographic change and a weak position on transversal technologies versus other regions of the world. While the EU and US economies were roughly the same size in 2010, by 2020 the EU economy was significantly below this level and this divergence continues.

At the same time, we are in and will continue to endure a period of extreme geo-political instability. The world is becoming more uncertain. Under this Commission, the policy response to this situation has been a concerted push across a number of policy areas to achieve increased European sovereignty.

The members of this coalition call for a new approach to the economic and security challenges we face, focused on opportunity. Rather than erect economic barriers in pursuit of greater ‘sovereignty’, we need to refocus on growing open and competitive markets. This in turn will act to boost productivity the biggest driver of economic growth and the only sustainable long-term way to grow the EU economy. Security for Europe will be achieved through economic prosperity and acknowledging that business can help to meet the pressing societal challenges of our time.


Europe Unlocked is issuing an S.O.S to the Commission, Member State governments and an incoming Parliament: Strengthen our Single Market. Europe’s long-term competitiveness and resilience rely on a stronger and deeper Single Market creating jobs, growth and prosperity for Europe and its citizens. In policy terms the next Commission needs to take Europe on a journey:

From barriers and red tape to more trade opportunities and resilient sourcing within and outside the Single Market.

From entering a green transition to delivering sustainable outcomes enabled by productive and market-driven investments and innovation.

From a heavy-handed and pre-emptive approach to regulating data use and new technologies, to more targeted interventions designed to correct market failure in specific areas or sectors.

From a partially mismatched to a fully agile workforce enabling people to acquire the skills for a sustainable knowledge-based economy and employer needs to be met.

From over-regulation to think-small-first policy-making and legislation underpinned by rigorous impact assessment.