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Cyprus leads Europe in knowledge-intensive business job growth

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Cyprus has emerged as the leader in brain business job growth in Europe, with an impressive 62 per cent increase in the share of adults employed in such roles since 2014, according to a recent report titled “The Geography of Brain Business Jobs.”

According to the report, this growth rate is the highest across all of Europe, tied with Lithuania.

The report, produced by the European Centre for Economic and Policy Research (ECEPR) with support from Nordic Capital, analysed highly knowledge-intensive enterprises in 31 countries and 277 regions across Europe.

It revealed that Cyprus, alongside Lithuania, has seen the most significant surge in brain business jobs, outpacing countries like Estonia, Finland, and Sweden.

“The brain business jobs of Europe are increasingly growing in Southern and Eastern Europe,” explained Nima Sanandaji, director of ECEPR.

“The capital regions of Southern Europe, including France, have 600,000 more brain business jobs than the Western European capital regions. Eastern European capital regions have twice as many brain business jobs compared to the Nordic capital regions,” Sanandaji added.

Klas Tikkanen, chief operating officer at Nordic Capital Advisors, noted, “There is a general trend in Europe in which those countries that have experienced the strongest growth of brain business jobs, per capita, tend to be those that have lower tax levels as a share of GDP.

“Competitive taxes are a key ingredient in fostering knowledge-intensive jobs growth,” Tikkanen added.

Cyprus, known for its strengths in telecommunications, head office and management, and pharmaceuticals, stands out with 6.2 per cent of its working-age population employed in brain business jobs.

This includes 1.2 per cent in the tech sector, 2.1 per cent in IT and communications (ICT), 2.1 per cent in advanced services, and 0.8 per cent in creative professions.

Meanwhile, Switzerland, Sweden, and Ireland ranked as the top knowledge economies in Europe, with Switzerland boasting the highest concentration of knowledge-intensive jobs at 10.7 per cent of its population.

The report also highlighted the importance of brain business jobs in reducing regional unemployment.

In regions where 10 percentage points more of the population is employed in these high-value-creating sectors, average unemployment rates are 2.1 per cent lower compared to typical European regions.

In terms of the top ten regions for brain business jobs, Budapest took the lead, followed by Bratislava and Prague.

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