Communications Networks, Content and Technology

Cloud Computing

Cloud Computing

Software & Services, Cloud (Unit E.2)

To promote the take up and EU-based supply of secure cloud computing services.


Full implementation of actions set out in the 2012 Cloud Computing Communication. Completed actions include:

  • Cloud Strategy Communication and Staff Working Document) Timeframe: 09/2012 Completed
  • Launch of European Cloud Partnership (ECP) Steering Board  Timeframe: 11/2012 Completed
  • Map of cloud standardization landscape – Completed December 2013
  • Industrial Codes of Conduct for Data Protection in Cloud to Art. 29 working party (with DG JUST)
  • Submission: 02/2014 Completed; Opinion of WP Art 29: October 2014
  • Launch of ECP Pre-commercial procurement (PCP) consortium PCP launch event Timeframe: 07/2013 Completed 

By 2015, to develop an updated agenda of concrete policy actions as part of the preparation of a phase II cloud policy agenda that would aim to strengthen EU-based supply predicated on a rapid take-up by SMEs and large firms, public authorities and consumers. To support research, innovation and investment in advanced European cloud infrastructures & services (including SMEs).


The market for cloud-based services is on the rise, however trust-related risks may hamper this growth. Building trust is crucial in unlocking the full economic potential of cloud computing, which is estimated to add €940bn to the EU GDP by 2020 and create 400.000 new SMEs and approximately 3.4 million of new jobs. Europe lags behind in cloud computing, in particular the supply of cloud computing services is mainly foreign-owned. The EU needs to step up its position, particularly by exploiting fast growth in private cloud markets in key business sectors.

The Cloud Computing Communication set out a series of actions that aim to strengthen the take-up of cloud computing services in Europe. The three key actions are: (i) cutting through the jungle of standards, (ii) safe and fair contract terms and conditions, and (iii) establishing a European Cloud Partnership to drive innovation and growth from the public sector. The implementation of the actions is being undertaken through the use of stakeholder engagement and self-regulatory instruments: • The action on cutting through the jungle of standards through the engagement with the European Telecommunications Standards Institute • The action on safe and fair contract terms and conditions through the Cloud-Select Industry Group and three subgroups on certification, codes of conduct (for data protection) and service-level agreements. • The action on the European Cloud Partnership through the establishment of a Steering Board and an initiative “Cloud 4 Europe” under the FP7 programme. The new Horizon 2020 programme will also provide support for the development of cloud computing services in public sector innovation. Moreover, the Heads of States in the European Council Conclusions of 24/25 October 2013 called on the European Commission to provide the right framework conditions for a single market for cloud computing, in particular by promoting high standards for secure, high-quality and reliable cloud services.


Full-Time Equivalent: 
15.50 full-time equivalent (FTE)
Collaboration with other DGs or agencies:
€110m (€32m (2xPCPs, 1PPI), €73M ICT7 €5m Intl)

Collaboration with the European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI), European Network and Information Security Agency (ENISA) and industrial stakeholders in the context of the Cloud Select Industry Group (C-SIG) and UNLAC for Latin American Cloud Developments.


Cloud-based services take-up by the public sector

Cloud-based services take-up by the public sector, evidence of take up for business critical applications and for sensitive data (% of public sector entities adopting at least one cloud solution)

Timeframe: 2015+



public sector cloud adoption

Target 60% for public cloud computing; 50% for private cloud computing (2015+)
Baseline 53% for public cloud computing; 28% for private cloud computing (2013)

Ongoing IDC study – SMART 2013/0043

Adoption rate as evidence of increased trust and confidence in cloud-based solutions

% of companies adopting at least one public cloud solution in the EU by industry sector

Timeframe: 2015+



Use of paid cloud computing services by EU enterprises (%) (lead indicator)

Target 35% (2016)
Baseline 19% (2014)

Eurostat community survey on ICT usage and eCommerce by enterprises

Chart URL See the chart

Percent of total business IT spend on public and private cloud computing

Timeframe: 2015+



Percent of total business IT spend on public and private cloud computing

Target 6% (2015+)
Baseline 1.1% (2010)

Ongoing IDC study - SMART 2013/0043

Link to DG CONNECT's Top Level Targets

  • eCommerce Action Plan - Double the share of eCommerce in retail sales and of the internet sector in European GDP by 2015
  • DAE - 50% of the EU to subscribe to broadband above100 Mbps by 2020
  • DAE - 50 % of the population to buy online by 2015
  • DAE - 20 % of the population to buy online cross-border by 2015
  • DAE - 33 % of SMEs to make online sales by 2015
  • DAE - 50 % of citizens to use eGovernment by 2015, with more than half returning completed forms