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Finland ranks as the third most innovative country in the EU, according to the European Innovation Scoreboard 2018.

The scoreboard assesses relative strengths and weaknesses of national innovation systems and helps countries identify areas they need to improve.

Sweden is the EU innovation leader, followed by Denmark, Finland, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom and Luxembourg, which joins the top innovators group this year. Germany drops to the group of strong innovators.

Finland scores strongest in the area of an innovation-friendly environment and human resources. The scoreboard declares Finland as an Innovation Leader that has increased performance over time relative to that of the EU in 2010.

On average, the innovation performance of the EU has increased by 5.8 percent since 2010. Over the last eight years, innovation performance increased in 18 EU countries and decreased in ten.

Performance has increased most in Lithuania, Malta, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom while it decreased most in Cyprus and Romania.

At the global level, the EU is catching up with Canada, Japan and the United States.

The EU maintains its lead over China, but this lead is decreasing rapidly with China having improved almost three times as fast as the EU.

Relative to South Korea, the EU has been falling behind, but a gradual catch-up is expected over the next years.