Minister names his digital priorities for this Parliament | DMA

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Minister names his digital priorities for this Parliament


Ed Vaizey MP is the Minister for the Digital Economy and he spoke about what the government’s priorities are in the digital space. As he pointed out, data-driven businesses are 40% more likely to launch new products and services and the UK government recognises this huge potential.

He spoke about the UK’s digital infrastructure, currently 80% of homes have superfast broadband and the government will make it 95% by 2017. Telefonica who won the bid to rollout 4G have been contracted by government to ensure that 98% of UK premises have indoor 4G coverage by 2017. The UK is at the forefront in Europe in developing a high-speed digital infrastructure.

Referring to the EU’s plan for a digital single market Ed Vaizey asked that businesses get in touch and tell government what they want from a digital single market. The UK government needs the input of businesses from around the country in order to have an effective voice in Brussels.

Towards the end of the speech he focused on digital skills, the UK needs a workforce that is competent online and in the digital space. The school curriculum will now include coding as a way to ensure people proficient in computing but much more is needed than simply amending the school curriculum. The public need to be empowered to feel confident to bank online among other things, this often relates to older people who are not digital natives. The government will work with various partners to ensure people have these basic skills in the UK.

The digital sector is a huge success in the UK, according to Mr Vaizey 1.3 million people are currently employed in the sector and over the next 10 years another 1 million will join them. Many of those jobs will be highly-skilled and so government will be there to assist in making sure the best and brightest from the UK workforce enter the industry.

Concluding, Ed Vaizey MP said;

The government is working in concert across a number of departments to deliver its truly digital agenda. At the heart of this is working at pace to embrace the changes and ensure that the UK is firmly on the map as the best place for digital skills. I look forward to working with you all more closely to make this the reality.

It is great to hear that this government understands the scale of the challenges at hand but also encouraging that the government wishes to champion the digital economy. The highly skilled jobs created by the digital industry are a great boost to UK Plc. Economic growth in the digital economy will make it an ever more vital part of the UK.

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