Europe's digital public services will have to be interoperable - MEP Ijabs

  • 2023-11-14
  • LETA/TBT Staff

RIGA - Europe's digital public services will have to be interoperable, or mutually compatible, says European Parliament member Ivars Ijabs (Development/For).

As LETA was told at the MEP's office, all public sector institutions and enterprises in Europe will need to assess their ability to "communicate" electronically across borders. Every major procurement or regulation of information technology systems will need to be preceded by an assessment of its future interoperability. This has been agreed in negotiations between the European Parliament  and the Council of the European Union.

Ijabs noted that Europe's public services are becoming digital, but often in ways that are not mutually compatible and interoperable. 

"The new law contains one simple requirement - before spending budget or EU funding, make sure that they [IT solutions] will be working across borders, not just in your own backyard. This will save taxpayers' money and ensure smoother services to people and businesses," the MEP said. 

The regulation defines Europe's digital public services as digital services involving cross-border interaction and provided by national or EU authorities to each other or to natural or legal persons.

Examples of such services include an exchange of academic diplomas, transport vehicles' data for road traffic safety, access to social security and health data, including vaccination certificates, accreditation for public procurement, digital driver's licenses, an exchange of commercial register data, etc. 

A single tool, which will be developed by the European Commission, will be used to assess interoperability. 

The agreed legislation, which has yet to be approved by the European Parliament, is expected to come into force in 2025.