As Europe celebrates three decades of the single market, it must invest in a project that is seen as a driver of employment and competitiveness, ensuring progress and prosperity. That is why it must invest in the technological sovereignty of the EU, following the ambitious proposals put forward by the European Commission in 2020 to curb the power of the major platforms and make them accountable, to foster innovation and to harness the power of AI. The message was delivered by the President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen.
With digital being decisive, all member states are increasing investments beyond the 20% target set under the Next Generation EU funds. This "reflects the importance of investing in our European technological sovereignty. We have to double down to shape our digital transformation according to our own rules and values," von der Leyen said.
Another area considered essential from a defence perspective is cyber security: "If everything is connected, everything can be hacked. Given that resources are scarce, we have to pool our forces", he warned, making it clear that Europe should not "just be content with tackling the cyber threat, but also strive to become a leader in cyber security".
Therefore, the President believes that cyber defence instruments should be developed in Europe, and a European Cyber Defence Policy is needed, including legislation on common standards, according to a new European Cyber Resilience Act. And if at EC level much can be done, member states will have to do more, starting with a common assessment of threats and a common approach to deal with them. The next Strategic Compass will be a key process of this discussion, and it is necessary to decide how all the possibilities that are already in the Treaty can be used.