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Technological Sovereignty: Cultivating Technology Leadership in Europe

By Dick Weisinger

Technology is dominated by American and increasingly Chinese businesses. And that has caused European countries to worry that their countries are becoming technologically less competitive and at odds with the goals of non-EU based technology companies.

The EU is trying to regroup and develop a five-year strategy to fight back and to be able to compete head on with the United States and China in the digital arena. The EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen has come up with a name for the strategy: Technological Sovereignty.

von der Leyen said that “it is not too late to achieve technological sovereignty in some critical technology areas. We will jointly define standards for this new generation of technologies that will become the global norm.”

To combat worries about privacy standards and to reduce reliance on US-based tech giants for cloud services and software, the EU is hoping to spark the creation of European-based technology vendors.

But some question whether the strategy will work. Michael Jackson, a venture capitalist living in Europe, said that “it’s blatant protectionism and is clearly for the benefit of legacy players, not to help Europe compete. It’s the same old story that we’ve heard before.”

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