World Bulletin / News Desk
A digital economy and innovation system are essential for the Mediterranean region’s economic growth, business leaders said Wednesday at a major economic conference in Barcelona.
Presenting the main findings of his research paper "Digital Entrepreneurship: Expanding the Economic Frontier in the Mediterranean” at the 11th Mediterranean Week of Economic Leaders, Moises Santana, co-founder of GTT Strategies in association with Singular Factory, said growing and intense globalization is being affected by the rapid emergence of new information and communications technologies.
"We are living in a post-industrial digital area," Santana noted.
Santana said the digitalization of the economy and immediate access to the Internet are changing the world.
He said digitalization of the economy is aimed at improving competitiveness and creating more jobs and economic stability.
Santana said the Mediterranean region must change its economic model to create more than 85 million jobs by 2023 it wants to be at the same levels with developed countries.
He said there is a positive correlation between productive entrepreneurship and wealth as well as a strong correlation between entrepreneurship and technology.
He noted that if Mediterranean countries improve their place on the global entrepreneurship index, it would generate $33 trillion worth of revenue.
New technologies and technological trends such as cloud computing and robotics are going to provide opportunities for the entire region, Santana noted.
Santana said the size of the Mediterranean region’s digital economy is expected to double by 2018, reaching around 27 billion euros.
"The value of e-commerce is estimated around $180 billion by 2020," he added.
"Digitalization of the economy is going to be a fundamental instrument for innovation, competitiveness and growth."
Artur Serra, Deputy Director of i2Cat, also underlined the importance of innovation systems for the Mediterranean region.
European countries except France and Italy are begging to create innovation systems which is crucial as an investment strategy for the next generations, Serra noted.
Serra said ‘labs’ such as living labs, policy labs and education labs should be built for co-innovation.
In order to enter the world of innovation, countries should understand how to take action at the right moment of the technology cycle, Serra said.
“That is mainstream now,” he said.
Serra added that the world and region face economic, social and political crises as most of the population does not enjoy the benefit of the technological cycle.
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