Prague, Czech Republic – Visegrad Group countries rank among the most industrialized economies in Europe, according to data from the EU’s statistical office.
All four Central European economies (Czech Republic, Poland, Hungary and Slovakia) count among the top 8 European economies where industry accounts for the highest share of total gross value added (GVA) – well above the EU average of 19.1%.
Although Ireland, with a share of industry in total GVA of 36.5%, comes first, it’s directly followed by the Czech Republic, where industry accounts for more than 30% of the country’s gross added value and 29% of total employment.
Neighbouring Slovakia, whose export-driven economy is also largely driven by its automotive industry, comes at the fourth place right after Slovenia (3rd). Industry accounts for 25.7% and 24.2% of Slovakia’s total GVA and employment, respectively.
At the other end of the scope, the least industrialized EU countries – relative to GVA – are Luxembourg (7%), Cyprus (7.9%), Malta (10%), France (13.4%) and the U.K. (13.6%), according to the latest Eurostat figures.
One of the main drivers of their booming economies, Visegrad Group countries’ manufacturing sectors – including their flagship auto industry – are also a factor of vulnerability, according to analysts, who have long pointed out that Central Europe’s export-driven industrial economies remain extremely dependent on potential trade disruptions and on their main trading partners, Germany in particular.