The EU continues to work closely with its Eastern partners in the digital area, focusing on promoting high-speed broadband internet to boost economies and expand e-services, creating more jobs in the digital industry and reducing roaming tariffs among the Eastern partner countries. Using digital solutions brings efficiency and transparency to governance and benefits to citizens. - Andrus Ansip
EU Ministers responsible for the Digital Economy and their representatives met their counterparts from Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, the Republic of Moldova and Ukraine on the 5th of October to discuss progress in their digital cooperation since their first meeting in June 2015, as well as the challenges and opportunities of the digital economy in the Eastern Partnership. The meeting was co-organised and co-chaired by the Estonian Presidency of the Council of the European Union and the European Commission.
The participants have adopted a declaration which reflects a clear commitment of all parties to deepen their cooperation in six joint priority topics: electronic communications and infrastructure, trust & security, eTrade, digital skills, ICT innovation & startup ecosystems and eHealth. In their declaration, the participants define specific targets for 2020 as part of a roadmap for their digital cooperation and in order to ensure concrete benefits for citizens and businesses.
The Presidency and the Commission stressed the importance of Digital Economy as a core element of the Eastern Partnership policy and underlined the need to strive for Harmonisation of Digital Markets (HDM) among the EaP partners and with the EU. The participants affirmed their shared commitment to the Digital Economy, including HDM and underlined its importance for social and economic development and for creation of growth and jobs. The participants proposed their adopted Declaration as input to the 5th Eastern Partnership Summit, which will be held in Brussels on 24 November.