1.Context and questions

In the run-up to the busy voting season on digital policy regulation in the European Parliament and the next meeting of the Transatlantic Trade and Technology Council(TTC), GLOBSEC Brussels organized a panel to address the main topics in this debate. The discussion revolved around three central questions:

 

➢Will the new EU digital policies be good enough to do what they are intended to do?

➢What are the consequences of the new European digital legislation for transatlantic relations?

➢What can be done more on digital policy regulation from a transatlantic perspective?

 

2. Speakers

❖AndreasSchwabMEP (EPP),Rapporteur on DMA Brussels/Strasbourg

❖Dr Alina Polyakova, CEO Center for European Policy Analysis, Washington

❖HannoWoelm, Policy Director, European Round Table for Industries, Brussels

❖Christoph Riedmann, Policy Advisor for Digital Policy, EUROCHAMBRES, Brussels

 

3. Key takeaways:

• Europe is lagging behind both China and the US in digital innovation. In the post-pandemic recovery, this has become particularly risky in terms of a speedy recovery.

• While upholding data privacy and fighting disinfo and divisiveness in the digital domain remain important priorities for the EU, regulatory overreach(in terms of speed and quantity)is always a risk. Protectionism will curb competitiveness, in the long run.

• There is clear common ground between the EU and US for a Transatlantic approach to digital policy legislation. Above all, this would serve to uphold a level playing field, to enhance competition policy, and safeguard our fundamental values as democracies.

• Importantly, such a common approach would be the only effective way to confront the world ́s leading autocracies in the digital sphere, improve collective Western digital competitiveness and strengthen global regulatory standards based on democratic values.

• Withthe new administration in Washington, progress has been made in this regard with a continuous EU-US dialogue on multiple levels in line with the TTC. Regulatory cooperation is crucial!     The recent meeting of Commissioner Vestager with the US Federal Trade Commission Chair Lina Khan is exemplary in this case.

• Nevertheless, the debate on the implementation of these policy goals must continue with all relevant stakeholders, including small and medium enterprises, to make sure points of disagreement will be solved in the future. A balance must be found between data protection on the one hand and growth and innovation on the other, all within a transatlantic approach.