focus on the digital future

During the Digital Assembly on 21 and 22 June in Toulouse, the European Commission and the French Presidency of the Council of the European Union organized a session dedicated to continuing support for the Ukrainian digital sector. This session was marked by the launch of a platform dedicated to digital donations to Ukraine.

Member State Ministers also signed a declaration on the transition to climate change aimed at reducing the environmental impact of the digital sector and discussed concrete actions aimed at strengthening the EU’s leading role in the field of immersive technologies. Member States have agreed to act together in these two vital areas and ask the Commission to support the setting of specific goals for the ICT sector in the context of the ecological transition and the development of immersive technologies, taking into account the values ​​of the Union.

Thierry Bretoncommissioner for the internal market, said: “It is more important than ever that Ukraine be as close as possible to the EU single market. In recent months, the European Union has already shown strong solidarity with Ukraine. However, significant efforts are still needed to rebuild the country. Ensuring coordination and structure at the EU level will help us increase and maintain support for Ukraine’s digital sector.”

Bruno Le Maire, French Economy and Finance Minister, said: “The Digital Assembly marks the end of the French Presidency of the Council of the European Union. In 6 months, the French Presidency achieved important milestones, including the adoption of digital markets legislation and digital services legislation aimed at holding digital platforms accountable, as well as the launch of initiatives such as Scale Up Europe aimed at strengthening innovation ecosystems in the EU. I am proud that, during today’s event, Member States agreed to further accelerate the green and digital transition and strengthen the EU’s immersive technology capabilities. They also concluded that there is a need for further sovereignty in the cloud sector and data ownership. This is essential if the EU is to achieve its digital targets by 2030. I know that the Czech Republic will continue these efforts and I wish them all the best in their future presidency.”

The 2022 Digital Assembly also focused on the 2030 targets set out in the Commission’s Digital Decade Communication, in particular with regard to digital skills, digital infrastructure, digital value chain and digital transformation. Suggestions for actions were made, for example, to achieve the skills target, including how to reach 20 million ICT professionals by 2030, male-female convergence, and an increase in the number of industry experts using cutting-edge digital technology.

Tech4UA: mobilization of digital actors for Ukraine

commissioner Breton, in collaboration with the French President and key representatives of the technology sector, has provided ongoing support to the Ukrainian digital sector, in particular regarding equipment, in addition to the 25 million euros already provided by the Commission. This session was also marked by the launch of a platform specializing in digital technologies for the donation of equipment to Ukraine. Based in Slovakia, this platform will cut down on red tape at the border for equipment donation companies and cover transport costs.

In addition, the participants agreed to ensure coordination and structure at the EU level to ensure ongoing technical support, and also discussed the upcoming accession of Ukraine to the Digital Europe program. Main goals: to support Ukrainian residents and refugees, help restore communications infrastructure and enable businesses to continue their activities.

The Future of the Internet: Strengthening EU Technological Capabilities

During this session on the future of the Internet, EU representatives, ministers and stakeholders reaffirmed their commitment to protecting and respecting human rights online and in the digital world. Participants called for, among other things, the further development of the European semiconductor industry through the European Semiconductor Regulation, achieving a global market share of 20% by 2030, investing in digital technology, and developing immersive technology in line with European values, fundamental rights and regulations.

Following the debates held during the Digital Assembly, the Member States will start discussing concrete actions to take advantage of the opportunities offered by immersive technologies, in line with European fundamental values.

Towards a successful green and digital transition in Europe

Digitalization and smarter and greener use of technology will help the EU reduce net greenhouse gas emissions by at least 55% by 2030 and make Europe the first climate-neutral continent by 2050, as set out in the European Green Deal and the European Climate Law. In parallel with this year’s Digital Assembly, Ministers of Member States discussed specific actions to reduce the environmental impact of the digital sector in order to use the full potential of technology to turn it into a green transition lever, as well as to monitor and optimize the environmental costs of the digital sector. The application will be posted here on Friday, June 24th.

European Digital Resources Task Force Report: Towards a Sovereign Digital Resources Infrastructure

Established in February 2022 at the Building Europe’s Digital Sovereignity Conference, members of the Digital Resources Working Group met at Digital Assembly to discuss funding opportunities, the establishment of a European incubator for digital resources, and a means or structure to provide advice and assistance to Member States. The results of these discussions are available in a report published online.

Digital assets are non-competitive, non-excludable digital resources defined by collaborative production, management, and governance. This initiative aims to enable Europe to take a step forward in response to the needs of the digital commons to unlock their full potential for Europe’s economy, security, sustainability and democracy, in line with the values ​​and principles of the Union.

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Digital Assembly 2022