Communication on Europe's Digital Decade: 2030 Digital Targets

In “A Europe Fit for the Digital Age”

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On 16 September 2020, the European Commission announced in the letter of intent, which accompanied President von der Leyen's State of the Union speech, its intention to achieve a digital Europe and to strengthen Europe's digital sovereignty by 2030. On 19 October 2020 the Commission included the Digital Decade initiative under its new initiatives foreseen in its work programme for 2021. The roadmap was open for feedback for 3 weeks from 10 February 2021 to the 09 March 2021.

As part of these goals, it has already put forward a Recommendation to boost investment in very high-capacity broadband connectivity infrastructure, including 5G. In addition, it has proposed a follow up regulation to the one already launched in 2018 for the European High Performance Computing Joint Undertaking, with an investment of 8 billion euros in the next generation of supercomputers.

The European Commission adopted the digital decade proposal on 9 March 2021. The roadmap sets a number of targets under the digital compass proposal for the EU to achieve the EU digital transformation by 2030. They cover four dimensions and a number of targets, among others:

  1. Digital infrastructures and capacity: All European households will be covered by a Gigabit network, with all populated areas covered by 5G by 2030. Also by 2025, Europe will have its first computer with quantum acceleration paving the way for Europe to be at the cutting edge of quantum capabilities by 2030. Other targets in this dimension include to deploy 10,000 climate neutral highly secure edge nodes and to produce cutting-edge and sustainable semiconductors.
  2. Digital education and skills : there will be 20 million employed ICT specialists in the EU, with convergence between women and men, by 2030. 
  3. Digital transformation of business: 75% of European enterprises have taken up cloud computing services, big data and Artificial Intelligence. More than 90% of European SMEs reach at least a basic level of digital intensity and putting the right investing tools to double the number of unicorn in Europe by 2030.
  4. Digital government: 100% online provision of key public services available for European citizens and businesses, 100% of European citizens have access to medical records (e-records) and 80% of citizens will use a digital ID solution by 2030.

It also includes a proposal for a Charter of Digital Principles at the service of people to set the European standard for ethical and fundamental values and human rights in the digital space.

Finally enhancing cybersecurity, such as in remote healthcare and identity protection are important aspects in the action plan, as well as goals toward a cleaner environment, including use of recycled electronic waste and individualized energy production. By 2030 international digital partnerships mainly in research and innovation projects should result in greater opportunities for European companies, including increased digital trade and a convergence with EU regulatory norms and standards.

On 25 March 2021, the Member States, in close cooperation with the Commission, agreed on a Connectivity Toolbox, pursuant to the Connectivity Recommendation of 18 September 2020. The Toolbox consists of a set of best practices that are considered as the most efficient in allowing and encouraging operators to roll out very high capacity networks and 5G.

At the Parliament the file has been assigned to the Industry, Research and Energy committee (ITRE).

On 15 September 2021 during the State of the Union speech, the Commission's president announced a robust governance framework to reach the digital targets in the form of a Path to the Digital Decade policy programme to achieve the digital transformation digital compass targets by 2030 (see related wagon).

On 26 January the European Commission has proposed the Declaration on digital rights and principles for a human-centred digital transformation. The aim of the declaration is to safeguard the Union values and rights and freedoms of individuals. The Declaration in a form of a joint solemn declaration is to be signed by the European Parliament, the Council, and the Commission. It is accompanied by a Communication, which defines the future steps for monitoring the measures and implementing the Declaration in practice.(see related wagon).


Further reading:

Author: Maria del Mar Negreiro Achiaga, Members' Research Service,

As of 23/06/2022.