How digital is your country? New figures show action needed to unlock Europe’s potential

Today the European Commission published the results of the 2016 edition of the Digital Economy and Society Index (DESI). The findings show that Member States have made progress in areas such as connectivity and digital skills, as well as in public services, since the publication of the Commission’s Digital Single Market Strategy last year. While highlighting improvements, the results released today also show that the pace of progress is slowing down. Action is needed, both at the EU and national levels, to remove the obstacles which prevent EU Member States from fully benefitting from digital opportunities. Andrus Ansip, Vice-President for the Digital Single Market, said: “More and more people, businesses and public services are going digital. But too many of them still face problems such as a lack of high-speed internet coverage or cross-border e-government, as well as difficulties in shopping and selling across borders. We need to fix this. This is what our Digital Single Market Strategy aims to do. The first proposals under the Strategy will boost e-commerce and connectivity. All our proposals will be on the table this year and I encourage EU Member States to lose no time in supporting them. These proposals will help them boost their digital performance and economies“. Günther H. Oettinger, Commissioner for the Digital Economy and Society, said: “The EU makes progress, but too slowly. There is no room for complacency. Action is needed if we want to catch up with Japan, the USA and South Korea. Based on today’s Index, we will come forward in May with concrete recommendations for EU Member States to improve their national performances. With this, combined with our work to create a Digital Single Market, I am sure that the EU as a whole and its Member States will do much better in the coming years”. The Digital Economy and Society Index (DESI) is an online tool to measure the progress of EU countries towards a digital economy and society. As such, it brings together a set of relevant indicators on Europe’s current digital policy mix. A press release in all EU languages and a Q&A are available online.