Opinion Factsheet  

Jedinstveno digitalno tržište

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Opinion Number: CDR 2646/2015
Rapporteur: KUHN-THEIS Helma
Commission: SEDEC
Status: Adopted
Date: 13/10/2015
 
The opinion stresses that the internet’s open character is a key driver of competitiveness, economic growth, social development and innovation;
it recommends creating conditions which facilitate the connection of all areas to broadband services which will be efficient in the long term, in a competitive environment, and calls on the Commission, as part of the implementation of the digital single market, also to report regularly on progress made in overcoming the digital divide, particularly at regional and local level
The CoR Opinion on "Digital Single Market" stresses, with regard to the strategic choice of the three "pillars" of the Communication, that, from the point of view of local and regional authorities, digitalisation effects in the linking of online and offline areas of the economy and society have to be included, as in an "app economy" network effects arising from modern platform services can be observed in these areas too at local and regional level.
One of the claims done in the opinion is that all areas should have access to high-speed broadband connections to avoid a further digital divide particularly in rural and sparsely populated areas. The Communication on "Connectivity for a European Gigabit society - Towards a European Gigabit Society", includes an accompanying measure to support Internet connectivity and converge refers to the setting up of a Participatory Broadband Platform ("by the end of 2016 a participatory broadband platform to ensure a high level of engagement and cooperation between relevant public and private entities for broadband investment and progress in implementing national broadband plans."). The platform is already launched and the first meeting will take place in October 2017.
THE EUROPEAN COMMITTEE OF THE REGIONS



- stresses that the internet’s open character is a key driver of competitiveness, economic growth, social development and innovation; recommends creating conditions which facilitate the connection of all areas to broadband services which will be efficient in the long term, in a competitive environment, and calls on the Commission, as part of the implementation of the digital single market, also to report regularly on progress made in overcoming the digital divide, particularly at regional and local level;

- also stresses the need to determine future investment requirements for broadband, especially at regional level, and proposes working with the European Commission and the European Investment Bank to develop new funding and support schemes for ICT infrastructure in, for example, rural areas;

- emphasises the enormous importance of the digital literacy and skills for citizens, workers and jobseekers for the comprehensive implementation of digitalisation in the economy and society. In this context, the Member States and the local and regional authorities, which in many cases are responsible for schools and educational institutions, have a key long-term role to play in the development of digital skills;

- reiterates its call for a proposal to ban geo-blocking in the digital single market, taking into account the cultural specificity of the audiovisual contents;

- regrets that the Commission communication only scratches the surface when it comes to "the sharing economy" and does not contain any proposals for a coordinated approach to the rules applicable to it;

- stresses that, in connection with the resulting need for adaptation of governance structures, responsibility and the leading role should be assigned to local and regional authorities, as the public sector's main "interface" with businesses and the general public.

Importance

High
Medium
Low
 

CoR Plenary Session

Adoption at the plenary session

 
11 Oct
 

CoR Commission activity

First discussion and adoption at commission level

 
24 Jun
 

Rapporteur's activities

Meeting with the European Commission

 
02 Jun
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