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G6:AI investments in the EU


Indicator G6 - AI investments in the EU offers an estimation of AI investments by public and private agents in the EU.

The G6 –AI investments in the EU indicator provides an estimate of AI investments by public and private sectors in the EU. To estimate the AI investments in the EU and the Member States, a top-down approach based on national statistics has been used. This methodology is the one utilised for the 2020 EU AI investments report.

The approach used considers the following two categories of AI investments:

  • expenditures on labour and skills, and
  • tangible and intangible capital assets incurred by public and private organisations to develop and implement AI to (re-)design business processes aimed at creating new or improving existing products or services.

The European Union

The EU invested between €7.9 billion and €9 billion in AI in 2019. This is an estimated increase of 39% compared with 2018. If a similar trend is maintained, the EU will exceed its annual AI investment target of €22 billion by 2030. This would imply that the annual investment target of €20 billion (which was set in the 2018 Communication Artificial Intelligence for Europe (European Commission, 2018)) will be reached ahead of schedule. The graph below represents the estimated maximum investment scenario.

All EU Member States increased their level of AI investments from 2018 to 2019.  Among the countries that invested more than €50 million in 2019, we find that Ireland, Belgium and Austria had the largest annual increases. Among countries with lower investment levels (i.e., less than €50 million), we see Bulgaria, Slovenia and Croatia presenting the highest yearly increases (+96%, +75%, and +67%, respectively). In absolute terms, France and Germany lead, as in 2019 they accounted for 22% and 18% of all EU AI investments, respectively. If along with them we include Spain, 50% of EU investments in AI during 2019 were made by only three countries.

Nevertheless, in 2018 the same three countries accounted for 53% of EU investments in AI. Thus, even if just one year is not sufficient to establish a trend, the fact that the concentration of investments decreases may suggest a progressively larger investment effort by a larger number of countries. The increase in the volume of AI investments in 2019 was driven to a large extent by the private sector, which accounted for 66% of all investments, while the public sector also increased its AI investments from 2018 to 2019 and accounted for 34% of the investments in 2019.


Factsheet1 February 2022
G6: AI investments in the EU