New eEurope action plan to have fewer priorities than predecessor

May 9, 2002

Brussels, 08 May 2002

The new eEurope 2005 action plan will have fewer and more focused priorities than its predecessor, the eEurope 2002 action plan, EU Commissioner for Enterprise and Information Society Erkki Liikanen announced on 6 May.

Speaking at a meeting of the Observatory for new technologies in Madrid, Mr Liikanen said that the new priorities will reflect the many achievements of the recent past and will move on to ensure progress in key areas.

'The limited number of priorities will make eEurope 2005 more selective than eEurope 2002 was with its blanket approach, but a stronger focus is necessary to ensure progress in the most crucial areas,' said Mr Liikanen.

The new priorities are likely to reflect what the Commissioner believes than Europe now needs: 'content for all in the user's language, through which the public sector has an important role to play through public sector information, e-government, e-health and e-learning.'

The development of e-business is another challenge, added Mr Liikanen, which should be accompanied by developments in broadband infrastructure and network security. The Commission's proposals for eEurope 2005 will be presented at the Seville European Council in June 2002.

Mr Liikanen also used his speech Madrid to call on EU governments to do more to encourage innovation, arguing that innovation goes together with high productivity growth.

In answer to his own question of 'what can governments do to encourage innovations?', Mr Liikanen outlined four measures: incentives for innovative companies, protection of intellectual property rights, the encouragement of entrepreneurial spirit and the encouragement of interaction between research, industry, entrepreneurs and sources of capital.

Referring to the protection of intellectual property rights, Mr Liikanen called the lack of agreement among EU Member States on a Community patent 'highly regrettable'.

The Commissioner also highlighted the extent to which the Sixth Framework programme for research and technological development, due to come into force in 2002, will promote innovation. 'Among other things, the proposals seek to encourage the transnational transfer of technologies, and encourage regions to cooperate in raising their innovation performance and in developing innovation strategies. There will also be backing for European-level networking of the players in the innovation system,' said Mr Liikanen.

For further information on eEurope, please consult the following web address: y/eeurope/index_en.htm

CORDIS RTD-NEWS/© European Communities, 2001

Register to continue

Why register?

  • Registration is free and only takes a moment
  • Once registered, you can read 3 articles a month
  • Sign up for our newsletter
Please Login or Register to read this article.