Digital Agenda Commissioner’s Briefing Paper
Europe lacks a single digital ICT market, which is essential for stimulating the growth of European small and medium sized enterprises. More harmonization among EU Member States is critical to overcome the disadvantages of today’s fragmented market. Public services at national and EU level could also be improved for citizens while reducing state spending, with a more integrated strategy of trans-sector “joined up” ICT implementation.
Business users support the Digital Agenda and the Granada Declaration. INTUG is keen to help the development of the Commission initiative to remove e-Commerce barriers to the Internal Market. Businesses need a well-functioning ICT environment, not only to be able to create a single ICT strategy for their own EU operations, but also to be able to offer services on an international scale, with fewer barriers than exist today.
Business users’ needs differ substantively from those of mass market consumers, and thus require separate market analysis to determine if effective competition is present. These markets are, however, complementary and not in conflict. The unique aspects of business user needs include multi-site and international access, additional functionality, greater reliance on total quality, and support for extended supply chain interoperability.
Business users welcome the stability that comes from long-term contracts. They need their chosen service providers to be able to secure resilient SLAs, including for services which are dependent on supply from the incumbent of non-discriminatory access.
In summary, INTUG requests:
• National Regulators, BEREC and the Commission to think Single Market
• Business markets to be identified separately for relevant market analysis
• Proactive involvement of user representation in consultations and strategy