The European Commission plans to create a single European market for data, hoping that pooling the region's deep industrial expertise could help build technology powerhouses to catch up with Silicon Valley and state-backed Chinese heavyweights.
The EU has set out draft plans to help local tech champions and rein in the power of big U.S. tech firms over data.
New proposals unveiled Wednesday could stop firms limiting access to data they hold, or gaining disproportionate benefit from it.
Having lagged the first wave of digital innovation, Brussels also now wants to give European firms a helping hand.
Internal Market Commissioner Thierry Breton said Wednesday that Europe could push itself to forefront tech innovation: (SOUNDBITE) INTERNAL MARKET COMMISSIONER THIERRY BRETON, SAYING (English): "The battle for industrial data starts now and Europe will be the main battlefield." Alongside a single European data market, the Commission plans to create smaller data markets centered on key industries.
The aim is to capitalize on data held by companies like Germany's Siemens and France's Alstom.
Brussels' plan comes alongside moves by some EU countries to impose digital taxes on major U.S. tech companies, in the face of fierce opposition from Washington.
Wednesday's proposals are wide ranging, including a goal for data centers to be climate neutral by 2030.
The Commission also called for a debate on the use of facial recognition in public spaces.
A final draft of the proposals is expected by the end of the year.
While the pandemic has affected almost all aspects of daily life in Europe, the European Commission claims the crisis has not diverted them from their ambitions to become carbon neutral by 2050.View on euronews
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The issue of the rule of law has become a central issue in the European Union over the last decade. Up until recently, the spotlight was mainly on concerns over Hungary and Poland. But now the European Commission has decided to widen its horizons.View on euronews
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Credit: HT Digital Content Duration: 22:59Published
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Around two-thirds of respondents in France (64%), Germany (67%) and Italy (68%) agreed not sufficient action was being taken in Europe. UK respondents agreed but in lower numbers (57%).View on euronews
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In the Harz region in the middle of Germany, dead spruce trees stand like white ghosts on the hilltops. They are victims of the bark beetle – a small insect that is causing major destruction across Germany.
Credit: euronews (in English) Duration: 02:34Published