AN ASSESSMENT OF
POLICIES AND REFORMS
World Economic Forum
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\u00a9 2004 World Economic Forum
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In March 2000, Europe\u2019s heads of state and
government met in Lisbon, Portugal, and declared
their intention to make the European Union (EU)
\u201cthe most competitive and dynamic knowledge-
based economy in the world, capable of sustainable
economic growth with more and better jobs and
greater social cohesion.\u201d2To achieve this goal by
2010 they adopted what is now called the Lisbon
Strategy of economic and structural reforms.
The present Lisbon Reviewaims to assess progress
made in the implementation of the far-reaching
goals for the EU-15 contained in the Strategy, using
as a reference point the very criteria for
competitiveness articulated by Europe\u2019s leaders on
that occasion.This is the second edition of a study
carried out by the Global Competitiveness
Programme of the World Economic Forum.
In addition to assessing the performance of the
15 existing EU members, this Lisbon Reviewpays
particular attention to the competitive performance
of those countries that join the EU this year, as well
as those scheduled to join in 2007.We endeavour to
assess how well prepared these countries are for
assuming the responsibilities of EU membership in
the context of the Lisbon goals, and to shed light on
where attention should be focused to ensure that
they contribute effectively to the competitiveness of
an expanded EU.
purposes of this research the United States will
remain the principal benchmark economy, helping
to gauge Europe\u2019s progress towards the achievement
of the goals contained in the Lisbon Strategy.Where
useful, further comparisons are made with the
average performance of the OECD member
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