Digital Agenda for Europe
A Europe 2020 Initiative

International Cooperation

The fifth generation of communications infrastructures, or 5G, is the future network infrastructure supporting the digitisation of the economic and societal activities worldwide. The European Commission strongly supports a cooperation and seeks for a global consensus and cooperation on 5G.
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The future of telecommunications and computing will see a world of fully interconnected users and devices, requiring more efficient technology to be able to overcome booming traffic and security issues. The key ICT drivers need to rely on common global definition of 5G, its service characteristics and standards. Only then can we ensure (optical and wireless) seamless communications, common ways to store and access information and computing power (cloud computing), sensing the world at large (Internet of Things) and ensuring the highest security and energy efficiency standards.

The infographic describes the 5G roadmap up to 2020

A global vision and standards for 5G will be developed together with international partners in late 2015-2016 under the leadership of the 3GPP standardisation body, the ITU and the Open Networking Foundation. With this early input, the EU stands a good chance that key elements of its vision will form part of the global standards.

EU - South Korea

A Joint Declaration on Strategic Cooperation in Information Communications Technology (ICT) and 5G, agreeing to deepen exchanges in the area of Net Futures (network and communications, 5G, cloud computing) was signed by the European Commission and the Ministry of Science, ICT and future Planning  (MSIP) of the Republic of Korea in June 2014.

The signing of this joint declaration reaffirmed the strengthening of the agreement of the November 2013 summit meeting, where both sides agreed on promoting R&D collaboration in the area of ICT.

This Declaration was instrumental  to develop joint R&I cooperation actions in the areas of 5G, Cloud and Internet of Things (IoT), which will be implemented through  jointly funded R&D programs ('coordinated call') in 2016. The joint Declaration also paves the way towards structured exchanges on 5G policy matters, concerning the 5G Vision, global standards and required 5G spectrum, with the objective of supporting global agreements on these issues.  Also, an industry Memorandum of Understanding was signed in June 2014 between the 5G Infrastructure Public Private Partnership (5G PPP) and the  5G Forum of the South Korea, providing the necessary industrial support to these policy commitments.


A joint declaration on developing 5G was signed by Günther H. Oettinger, European Commissioner for the Digital Economy and Society, and Sanae Takaichi, Japanese Minister for Internal Affairs and Communications (MIC) in May 2015.

Commissioner Oettinger said:"5G will be the backbone of the digitisation of our economy and society worldwide. This is why we strongly support and seek a global consensus and cooperation on 5G. Today's Declaration with Japan is a milestone on the road to a global definition of 5G, its service characteristics and standards."

The Joint declaration on 5G will follow the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between the 5G Infrastructure Public Private Partnership (5G PPP) and Japan's Fifth Generation Mobile Communications Promotion Forum (5GMF) on 25 March 2015. This Memorandum also indicates the commitment of the industry on working towards the deployment of 5G.

EU and Japan has set up a close cooperation on ICT policy issues since 2008, when the European Commission together with Japanese Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications initiated the Japan-EU ICT Dialogue.  Japan-EU ICT dialogue set ground for the first ICT Japan-EU coordinated call published in October 2012. It stands out as a milestone, as the first 6 research projects were officially announced in July in July at an inaugural July event in Tokyo. Their work is to design network and computing technologies for the next generation of telecommunications and cloud-based services beyond 2020.

Europe acknowledges Japan's role in the global ICT industry and already prides on successful cooperation, as both regions previously agreed to support the same 3G standard.

Last updated on 13/08/2015


Mario Campolargo's picture
5G, Shaping the Vision: this was the motto of this year's European Conference on Networks Communications (EuCNC2015), which attracted numerous keynotes and delegates from Europe and other regions of the world and I am once again proud to be a part of it.
Thibaut Kleiner's picture
Network technologies at the core of the digital economy and society: the EU vision on 5G in the realisation of the digital single market and the preparation for large scale testing of the internet of things.
Mario Campolargo's picture
13/11/2014, Brussels: The first EU workshop on spectrum requirements for 5G: EU research, regulators and policy makers get together in a vibrant debate!
Mario Campolargo's picture
Coming back from the European Conference on Networks Communications (EuCNC2014) held on 23-26 June in Bologna, it is my pleasure to share insights on how research and technology is developing in this area.
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