Emergence and Development of the Service Economy in the European Union

  • Jacques De Bandt


With regard to the importance of services in both GDP and employment, the European Union countries have clearly entered into the service economy. Many economists, still sticking to the ‘industrial paradigm’ and thus to the idea that only ‘manufacturing matters’, consider service growth as being very negative: their productivity surpluses are zero or small, they are inflationary, and they lead to stagnation. Before entering into this debate, it is necessary to know more about the real content of the emergent service economy. Taking into account the heterogeneity of tertiary activities, an attempt is made to clarify, on the basis of recent statistics, where growth and performances are located. This highlights the central position of banking and business service activities.


Relative Productivity European Economy Service Activity Business Service Price Difference 
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© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Limited 2000

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  • Jacques De Bandt

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