- European Union Commissioner Guenther Oettinger said Europe needs to quickly invest close to $800 billion in its digital infrastructure, according to a Reuters report.
- Europe needs to develop fiber-optic networks and next-generation high-speed 5G wireless applications and networks to catch up with the U.S. and China, said Oettinger.
- Oettinger said if the EU can’t act fast, "we will lose, because important technological applications will not be possible any longer in our industry.”
Oettinger, whose role include working with the digital economy and society, said common data standards in the U.S. have enabled that country to make large strides toward digital transformation that EU-based companies have been unable to make.
"We have to bundle our European strength we have at universities and in the industry, or our 28 silos will be not strong enough to compete with Silicon Valley and the Chinese," Oettinger said, speaking at a panel at the European Alpbach forum, an annual conference in Austria.
To further modernize in the digital age, Oettinger is calling for technology experts to come to Europe to help drive innovation. Meanwhile, though some are calling for increased investment in the digital economy, many still hold privacy concerns about how organizations use data, which could continue to deter some innovation.