Territorial Competitiveness in Romania â€“ The Role of Economic Clusters
Analyzing the competitive performance of Romanian industry, one may say that Romania has an economy based mainly on the manufacturing industry, characterized by features such as: â€¢ high labor intensity, especially in industries such as textiles, knitwear, apparel, leather and footwear; â€¢ high capital intensity, especially in industries such as metallurgy, yarns and fibers, cement, petrochemicals, milling; â€¢ high energy consumption in almost all industries. The result is a manufacturing industry with quite low level of labor skills and low level of the research-innovation-development triad. However, due to structural changes one may witness, on the one hand, the decline of the Romanian traditional industrial specializations and, on the other hand, the creation of modern industrial entities similar to the economic clusters promoted in the European economies. In this line of argument, the current paper attempts to answer questions such as: to what extent do clusters impact on territorial competitiveness in Romania and, in which areas of activity. The correct identification of the current and potential comparative and competitive advantages and of their factors (costs, diversification, technological level, labor skills, innovation, etc.) at national, regional and intra-regional level and their use as bases for future actions, measures and policies in the domain of competitiveness are, in our opinion, some of the employable instruments required by the current economic crisis. An adequate diagnosis of the internal resources and competencies (especially of potential and underdeveloped advantages), of external opportunities and threats, and of their inter-linkages is necessary to set the competitiveness policies, strategies and actions on more sound foundations. Keywords: economic crisis, clusters, SME, competitiveness, regional development JEL Classification: O25, R38, R58
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