Greece failing to realise its digital potential

13 May 2017
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Greece needs to improve its performance in digital policy, where it was lagging behind even comparably crisis-hit Portugal, main opposition New Democracy leader Kyriakos Mitsotakis said on Friday.

“We do not seem to be fully aware of our true digital potential,” Mitsotakis said while speaking at the Hellenic Federation of Enterprises (SEV) conference on “Greece’s Digital Strategy: The Road to Growth” held at the Athens Concert Hall.

ND’s president said his party had a well-structured plan for improving the country’s performance in this area, where it currently ranked in the lowest positions among European countries. He stressed the need to implement the right digital governance framework and to coordinate state initiatives, noting that neither the previous nor the current models were working.

“The country needs a competent deputy minister that will report directly to the prime minister and will be responsible for the General Secretary for Digital Policy. This must be an extra-Parliamentary individual with a good sense of the market that will supervise a National Council on Digital Policy,” he said.

According to Mitsotakis, there had to be a restructuring of the government in order to bring together the currently scattered basic infrastructure, with a General Secretariat for Information Systems acting as a central structure. These were not partisan issues, he pointed out, but should form the basic framework of a national strategy.

“We have not seen this. Nor have we seen a willingness for broader dialogue,” he added, criticising the government’s stance.

Mitsotakis also noted the need to introduce a digital ID in Greece and highlighted the necessity for life-long learning to teach IT, from schools right up to adult education.

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