According to Prime Minister Jüri Ratas, the governments and public sector of Europe need to be brought into the digital age, because people are already online and expect to get the best possible e-services.
“By 2025, the digital natives will already turn almost middle-aged and it is our duty to offer them the best living environment, where communication with officials, companies and citizens would take place primarily in the form of e-services,” said Prime Minister Ratas in his welcoming speech, today at the Ministerial e-Government Conference organised at the Tallinn Creative Hub (Kultuurikatel).
In order to ensure that the digital single market functions as efficiently as possible, free cross-border movement should be enabled not just for people, goods, money and services, but data as well. “To remain competitive, Europe must keep up with technological development. This requires international cooperation, as well as an exchange of experiences and knowledge between countries,” said Ratas.
The Prime Minister confirmed that developing e-government is definitely worth the effort. “About 20 years ago, when we started building out our e-government, we gathered information about the best practices is various countries and learned from those. By now, Estonia is now at the top of the e-government game. Last year, we saved 3 543 years of working time thanks to e-governance. That means that a great deal of time and money was saved.”
People will start using various e-services only if they are reliable. “Trust comes from the security and transparency of services – you cannot have one without the other. We have to protect people online as we protect them offline,” emphasised the Prime Minister.
European ministers responsible for e-government signed today a joint Tallinn Declaration on eGovernment (the Tallinn Declaration) to reinvigorate Europe's efforts in this area.