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RS Components

Technology is becoming critical to our industries and lifestyles across the globe, and it’s no longer tech giants that are competing to have the latest innovations, but countries also as they desperately attempt to take the lead in the technological boom of the twenty-first century.

Analysing the high tech export figures of each country is a crucial indicator of their commitment to driving forward investments in tech and essentially the effort they are making to become a more technological nation. High tech exports are essentially products that require significant resources and research in order to develop and produce, and have a variety of benefits both for the exporter and importer. Coming in a variety of forms from technical guidance and assistance, to the transference of industrial property and rights, the granting of licenses related to business management or even pertaining to patent rights and utility model rights, exporting high-technology can be extremely profitable and advantageous for a country in the digital world we live in today.

A major benefitter of high-tech exports includes the significant profits it can produce, which will boost a country’s economy as a result, especially with the tech industry being the largest in the world economy by significant amounts. For the importer there is also value as it can save money and be beneficial to the economy, with time and money essentially being saved as they pay for technological innovation to be brought to their country, rather than researching it themselves. Tech exports can also be greatly beneficial in developing countries who do not have the resources to drive themselves forward in the technological boom, and so instead, use other countries exports to better the living standards and security of their own country. High-tech exports mainly feature in the following industries:

  • Aerospace

  • Computer

  • Pharmaceutical

  • Scientific instruments

  • Electrical machinery

The rise of tech exports over the last decade in Europe has been staggering, as countries with very low export values in 2006 have skyrocketed over the last ten years, becoming the fastest growing in the continent. Competing for the latest developments and innovations to set their industries apart from the rest, which countries are making the largest steps in this fast-paced, ever-changing technological era?

RS Components has analysed 10 years of high-tech export data from The World Bank to see which countries are enjoying the most and least growth. You can view the map here.

Below are the top five countries with the highest average annual growth rates (AAGR):

Country name

2006 High-tech Export Value

2016 High-tech Export Value

10-year AAGR





















Albania takes top place with a staggering growth of 155.2% in its high-tech exports across ten years, going from $3,968,947 to $8,424,644 . Albania’s growth far surpasses the rest of the continent, with a growth percentage at least three times higher than any other European country, with its primary trading partner remaining as the European Union (EU). With just 2.9 million people, this upper/middle-income country has done extremely well in rising the ranks as a European tech nation.

In second place is Azerbaijan with an average annual growth rate of 41.1%, going from $9,073,107 to $9,132,464. The positioning of the country reveals a great deal about its export business, as its location joining southwestern Asia and southeastern Europe sees 49.9% of its exports delivered to European countries and 46.4% sold to Asian importers.

But not every European country has seen an increase in their high-tech exports, with the below table revealing the five countries with the lowest average annual growth rates (AAGR);

Country name

2006 High-tech Export Value

2016 High-tech Export Value

10-year AAGR

















United Kingdom




Finland ranks as the European country with the lowest average annual growth rate, as their figures have actually shrunk, leaving an average growth rate of -11.8%. The United Kingdom also features in the bottom five, seeing an average annual growth rate of -4.1%.

So which country will be leading the way in high-tech exports in another decade’s time?


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