Germany and France on Thursday launched a mission to arrange a European cloud computing platform that they hope will improve European financial sovereignty within the wake of the coronavirus disaster and break the continent’s dependence on US and Chinese language corporations.
The platform, entitled GAIA-X, is supposed to be up and operating — at the very least in prototype type — at the start of subsequent yr and be open to customers from outdoors Europe that commit to stick to European requirements. German Economic system Peter Altmaier mentioned that the goal is “nothing lower than a European moonshot in digital coverage.”
Germany and France will arrange a non-profit affiliation to coordinate and set up the information infrastructure, Altmaier mentioned. Conceived final yr and initially introduced in October, GAIA-X follows on the heels of an current push by the European Union’s two greatest economies to arrange a automotive battery consortium geared toward catching up with Asian rivals.
The cloud computing mission “couldn’t have been extra well timed” as Europe tries to dig itself out of a deep recession brought on by the coronavirus disaster, French Economic system Minister Bruno Le Maire mentioned.
“With the COVID disaster, corporations massively shifted to teleworking. This makes the necessity for (a) safe and European cloud answer all of the extra pressing,” Le Maire advised a information convention by video hyperlink from Paris.
“The disaster additionally confirmed that the large tech corporations are the winners … the European digital house needs to be protected,” he added, pledging that the brand new platform “will guarantee the applying of coverage guidelines primarily based on EU values and requirements.”
“We aren’t China, we’re not america — we’re European international locations with our personal values and our personal financial pursuits that we wish to defend,” Le Maire mentioned. He pressured the significance of “interoperability,” permitting corporations to modify simply to the brand new system with out dropping any knowledge.
The 2 ministers mentioned the mission has introduced collectively 22 corporations in France and Germany, together with Dassault Systemes, Orange, Siemens, SAP, Robert Bosch, and Deutsche Telekom. They did not give monetary particulars. Le Maire known as on “all different European corporations and international locations” to hitch the initiative.
Past that, “the thought is that we invite corporations the world over offering their cloud companies based on European requirements and guidelines,” Altmaier mentioned. “Everybody who needs to have the label of GAIA-X should respect and to fulfill a number of units of guidelines,” together with on interoperability and knowledge migration.
He mentioned that the mission’s success “will probably be essential for Germany, for France and for Europe so far as our financial energy, our competitivity and our sovereignty are involved.”