Service Economy 2018
Services hold out opportunities for economic growth
The manufacturing industry - in its production process - continues to be a major user of the output of the services sector. Meanwhile the boundaries between products and services are becoming blurred and industrial companies 'enrich' their products and value chains with services.
Manufacturing is shifting from developed industrial countries to lower-cost locations, meanwhile manufacturers in developed industrial countries are focusing on developing services that add value to products and managing increasingly more complex production and supply chains. Traditional industry is thereby losing manufacturing-related jobs to services.
Looking at the services sector one can see that the most attractive services are those that are knowledge-based and generate high value added, such as telecommunication services, software development, financial intermediation, consultation services, exportable health care and education services, transportation and logistics services, and the creative industry. Hereby the interest is principally focused on innovation and thus raising the export potential.
Services exports could play a significant role in sustaining economic growth in such a small country as Estonia with its open economy and limited resources. However, the dynamics of the services sector and opportunities for underpinning the competitiveness of the economy have scarcely been studied.
At international level, many studies regarding services have been conducted and comparative analyses of policies initiated in order to assess the pertinence and impact thereof on enhancing the productivity and export capacities of the services sector. In more progressive countries, programmes have been initiated to sustain services sector innovation. However, in most countries, including Estonia, enterprise policy support measures continue to be mainly targeted at encouraging the development of industrial products and technologies while neglecting the particular features of services sector innovation.
Within the service economy 2018 foresight, there are six fields which are being explored in further detail. For more information about each field, click on the icons.
For further information, please contact:
Imre Mürk, Expert of the Foresight Division, Estonian Development Fund: imre.myrk[A]arengufond.ee