Geert Bourgeois: “European data regulation can and must improve”

14 March 2023

The European Parliament gave the green light to start negotiations with the Commission and the Council on the data regulation. This regulation establishes a framework for data sharing between businesses and between businesses and consumers and public authorities. The N-VA fully supports the objective of this data regulation, but warns against the shortcomings of the proposed rules and obligations.

Geert Bourgeois: “Sharing data is crucial to our prosperity, innovation and Competitiveness The extent to which companies in one country can compete with similar companies in another country. A law came into force in Belgium in 1996 to monitor competitiveness. This stipulates that Belgian salaries may not evolve faster than the average of those in the three neighbouring countries. The Central Economic Council (CEC) performs an annual measurement to see if the objectives have been obtained. competitiveness . The European Commission calculated that the regulation could generate an estimated EUR 270 billion in GDP The gross domestic product (GDP) is the total monetary value of all goods and services produced within a country, both by companies and the government. This term is usually used as a benchmark for a country’s prosperity. This is why the N-VA closely follows the evolution of the Belgian GDP. GDP growth by 2028. The degree to which we are lagging behind the US and China is dramatic. Their Big Tech companies have a virtual monopoly over personal data, including European personal data. The EU must not fall behind a second time. We must not miss the wave of industrial data.”

The door to improper use must close

However, the European N-VA group hopes that more attention will be paid to the concrete elaboration of such a data regulation.  The main area of work concerns legal certainty for our companies and protecting their trade secrets and intellectual property. “To that end, certain concepts such as ‘trade secrets’ or ‘competing products’ must be more clearly defined. The influence of the mandatory release of data on the safety of a product or on one’s own competitive position is also another source of uncertainty,” says Geert Bourgeois.

Finally, there must also be a stricter delineation of the ability of governments to demand private data. Too many (European and national) public authorities are authorised to do so in the event of an “exceptional necessity”.

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