As representatives of the European countries gather in Brussels for Digital Day 2018, 22 Member States of the European Commision (EC) have signed a declaration to establish a European Blockchain Partnership.
According to the press release, this is a landmark partnership as it will be a “vehicle for cooperation amongst member states to exchange experience and expertise in technical and regulatory fields and prepare for the launch of EU-wide [Blockchain] applications across the Digital Single Market for the benefit of the public and private sectors.”
The announcement came after the speech of the EC’s Vice President Andrus Ansip, in which he praised the nascent blockchain technology as well as artificial intelligence. Ansip further said that these are “the areas where Europe is best positioned to play a leading role”.
Welcoming the signing of the declaration, Mariya Gabriel, Commissioner for Digital Economy and Society, said: “In the future, all public services will use blockchain technology. Blockchain is a great opportunity for Europe and member states to rethink their information systems, to promote user trust and the protection of personal data, to help create new business opportunities and to establish new areas of leadership, benefiting citizens, public services, and companies.”
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The signatory countries of the declaration are Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and the UK.
The EC is also inviting other members of the EU and the European Economic Area to join the European Blockchain Partnership.
Moreover, to boost the support of the use of blockchain in technical and societal areas, the EC, in February, launched the EU Blockchain Observatory and Forum and has already invested more than 80 million euro in various related projects.
“The Partnership launched today enables Member States to work together with the European Commission to turn the enormous potential of blockchain technology into better services for citizens,” Gabriel added.