The EU’s warring digi-chiefs — Vice President Andrus Ansip and Commissioner Guenther Oettinger — finally seem to be singing from the same hymn-sheet.
Both gave speeches highlighting the need for the wider industry to “get digital” as well as bemoaning the Digital Skills Gap™.
Ansip and Oettinger quoted the same figures saying that only 1.7 per cent of EU companies make full use of digital tech such as mobile, social media, cloud, big data, while 41 per cent say they are not using any of them.
According to Ansip, a “digital by default strategy” across the EU public sector could save €10bn a year and e-invoicing in public procurement could save up to €2.3bn.
Speaking at the European Policy Centre in Brussels, robo-veep Ansip once again reminded listeners that an EU-wide digital single market is essential to Europe’s economic recovery. Market barriers must be removed, he said and “consumers could save €11.7bn per year if they could choose from a range of goods and services from across the EU’s 28 countries when they shop online.”
He could not resist a mention of his favourite pet subject – geo-blocking – but added: “This is not only about getting rid of long-standing annoyances like geo-blocking. It is a lot more. This is about Europe‘s future.”
Oettinger, too, reverted to type at the Hannover Messe event in Germany, highlighting the plight of his favourite subject, the car industry:
“Will we sell only cars, or also the whole range of new digital services that come with the car? This is going to be all the more important as cars become increasingly connected and automated. If we do not pay enough attention, we might invest in producing wonderful cars but those selling the new services for the car would be making the money.”
Source: The Register