Information and communication technologies contribute 15 per cent of the European Union's gross domestic product, the European Commission said in its semi-annual economic forecasts published Wednesday.
This estimate compares with a 33 per cent contribution the sector makes to US GDP, according to an estimate for 2000 by the US Department of Commerce.
The European estimate is based on studies in several of the 15 countries that make up the EU. These include Germany, where the contribution was estimated at 11 per cent, and Finland where the estimate stood at 46 per cent, the commission said.
"In some EU countries like Finland, Sweden, to a lesser extent Denmark, the Netherlands and the UK, the ratio is probably higher," the commission said.
"The main difference between the US and the EU seems to lie in the role of investment, which was more dynamic in the US," it said.
"An increase in the contribution is likely in the very near future, provided that investment in information and communication technologies accelerates markedly in the EU," it said.