Businesses encouraged to help shape new UK digital strategy

Out-Law News | 05 Jan 2016 | 3:15 pm | 1 min. read

A new digital strategy for the UK is to be outlined early this year, the UK's digital economy minister Ed Vaizey has said.

Businesses and other stakeholders have been given a chance to shape how that strategy should look. They have until 19 January to send over thoughts to [email protected] The new strategy will map out how the UK will engage in a "digital revolution" over the next five years, Vaizey said.

"When people want to start a digital business, trial new ways of working or invest in cutting-edge technology, we want them to choose the UK," Vaizey said. "This is about nurturing the digital frontier, firmly planting our stake in the digital global market, and getting the world to buy into our success."

"Come 2020, undoubtedly the UK landscape will have changed to be firmly in the digital age. But how do you want to shape that? Government has ideas and ambitions but as Tech City UK back in 2010 shows, the ideas are out there. So challenge us - push us to do more. Let’s show the rest of the world how it’s done," he said.

Vaizey said he wants the UK to be "synonymous with digital". He said the UK needs to support innovation and ensuring that regulations "keep pace with technology".

"We need to take bold steps to create an open and flexible environment for digital innovation that crosses country borders," Vaizey said. "This means pushing for the completion of the digital single market in Europe, which could create a €415 billion boost of economic growth for the region."

Vaizey said that transforming government is also one of the "key ingredients" to the UK being a successful global leader in digital technology. This means that "government services need to be as good as the best consumer services", he said.

"Renewing your passport should be as easy as buying a book online, so what more can we do to make sure interacting with government is as simple and seamless as possible?" Vaizey said.

The minister also asked stakeholders for their views on how the UK can be at "the cutting edge" of digital developments, from driverless cars to drone deliveries, and said that the UK needs to make sure new technologies are utilised for "transforming day to day life".

Vaizey said that it was also important that the technological infrastructure is in place, that protections are in place against cyber crime and terrorism, and that the development of digital skills is embedded into the UK education system.

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