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Events | Brussels, 16 April 2012

High-level conference on "Competitiveness, trade, environment and jobs in Europe: Insights from the new World Input Output Database (WIOD)"

On 16 April 2012 the European Commission hosted the high-level conference "Competitiveness, trade, environment and jobs in Europe: Insights from the new World Input Output Database (WIOD)".

Using the opportunity of the public release of the database, the aim of the conference was to discuss the policy implications related to the expansion of global value chains and the shifting pattern of trade.

The lack of appropriate data has so far been an obstacle to get a thorough understanding of the implications of the shifting structure and nature of trade flows. Traditional trade statistics do not provide sufficient information on  where and how exports of intermediate inputs are used, nor to which part of the production process a country's companies are contributing. The WIOD database will deepen our knowledge of the causes and effects of the increasing interrelatedness of countries and industries. This way, it will help policy makers and societies to better respond to many pressing economic, social and environmental challenges.

Nokia N95
Chart: Nokia phone - EU production value

During the morning session of the conference EU Trade Commissioner Karel De Gucht as well as a high-level WTO representative gave key note speeches. This was followed by a presentation by the WIOD consortium of the new database, and by a policy roundtable discussion on the topic "Does Europe still have a competitive advantage?". 

The afternoon session of the conference was dedicated to analysing how the WIOD database can deepen our understanding of trade and the increasing inter-relatedness between countries and industries.

Speech by Commissioner De Gucht at the conference

Background material for the WIOD project presentations at the conference