Liberalisation of public data gets green light from EU institutions

EPA-EFE/OLIVIER HOSLET

EU Commissioner for Digital Economy and Society Bulgarian Mariya Gabriel gives a press conference in Brussels.

Liberalisation of public data gets green light from EU institutions


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Negotiators from the European Council, the European Commission, and the European Parliament have all reached an agreement to facilitate public sector data sharing and availability as part of a new directive that is fully compliant with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and will ensure that an increasing amount of “high value” data becomes widely available.

According to the agreement, the dissemination of public sector information such as anonymised household energy consumption, national or regional literacy and education levels, meteorological data, and traffic statistics, will all be covered by the new directive.

The directive updates the 2003 legal framework which set out rules encouraging the 28 EU members to share and reuse of data drawn from the public sector.

The European Commissioner for Digital Economy and Society, Mariya Gabriel, underlined that making information more open for re-use benefits the European data economy by enabling new innovative products and services that are based on artificial intelligence technologies.

“Beyond the economy, open data from the public sector is also important for our democracy and society because it increases transparency and supports a facts-based public debate,” added the Commissioner.

The European Parliament and Council now intend to formally adopt the Directive on Open Data and Public Sector Information. The EU’s constituent members will have two years to implement the new rules.

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