The north and west of Ireland has been downgraded to a “lagging region” by the European Commission.
The Sunday Business Post has revealed that development challenges have affected the GDP per head of population in the region, leading to its fall in the rankings.
The region, which covers Mayo, Galway, Roscommon, Leitrim, Sligo, Donegal and Monaghan, is now the only region marked as ‘lagging’ after dropping from ‘more developed’ status to a ‘transition region’.
The GDP per head of population in the region is now an estimated 71 per cent of the EU average.
The report found that weaknesses in the region centred around lower productivity and educational attainment, as well as a weaker skills base and business environment.
The north and west is now ranked the 177th most competitive region out of a total of 240 in the EU.