Ireland ranks in top 10 EU countries for R&D investment
IRELAND ranks in the top 10 EU countries for investment in Research and Development.
Fourteen of the top spending companies for R&D are based here, while spending in Ireland jumped by 13pc in 2011.
Major EU-based firms increased their R&D investment by 8.9pc last year, up from 6.1pc in 2010.
The hike nearly matches US firms at 9pc, beats the global average of 7.6pc and is far ahead of Japanese companies at 1.7pc.
R&D growth in the EU is largely driven by the car sector, which accounts for the biggest share of investment at 25pc.
Companies based in Germany, which account for around one-third of the EU's total private R&D investment, increased R&D by 9.5pc.
Firms in the UK and France, which also account for a large proportion of private research, had growth of 13.1pc and 7.6pc respectively.
Commissioner for Research, Innovation and Science Maire Geoghegan-Quinn said: "Knowledge is the lifeblood of European competitiveness, so the increase in R&D investment by EU companies is a call to arms in our battle for growth and jobs," she said.
The US is still ahead of the EU, explained by the higher number of hi-tech firms in the US at €178.4bn versus €144.6bn.
The 2012 Scoreboard is based on a sample of around 1,500 companies, the world's top investors in R&D and equivalent to almost 90pc of the total expenditure on R&D by businesses worldwide.
It measures the total value of their global R&D investment financed with own funds.
Out of the 1,500 companies, 405 are based in the EU; 503 in the US; 296 in Japan; and 296 in the rest of the world, including Switzerland, South Korea, China, India and 23 other countries.