Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/1999-07-21-Speech-3-113"

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"I would also like to commend the Finnish Presidency on another of their initiatives which is the attention they are giving to the development of the information society. This issue is going to affect the lives of every citizen in the European Union. We have crucial decisions to make in the Union and in the regulation of information technology over the next five years. I am very much hoping that the Finnish Presidency will give us the right framework within which those decisions will be taken. I would just like to set out some pointers for that. The first pointer is that it is quite clear that technology runs ahead of politicians. I cannot resist pointing out, Mr President, that we do not yet have computers or Internet access in this splendid building. Indeed, I suspect that many of our colleagues are not as literate in technology as they should be, but that technology is going to have a huge effect on opening up the single market and we must make sure, first of all, that legislation does not restrict the ability of people to innovate and introduce changes and new forms of electronic commerce. Secondly, we must ensure that consumers powerfully use this technology. The information society is going to be one in which consumers have tremendous power to shop all over the world and particularly within the boundaries of the single market. I have to say that over the next five years the power of electronic commerce will act more quickly to create the single market than any amount of harmonising legislation that we might care to introduce in this Chamber or anywhere else. It will be crucial in creating the single market. Finally, of course, it will create jobs. Electronic commerce is giving small entrepreneurs access to global markets cheaply, quickly and effectively. It is encouraging the development of new forms of small business and we must continue to allow those new businesses to grow. And so, in conclusion, Mr President, Finland with its great strength in computers and communications is ideally placed to lead us. There are three words I would leave you with if I may – openness, flexibility and innovation."@en1
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"Harbour (PPE)"1

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