European Parliament wants Open Document exchange format for electronic business

Strasbourg, Sept 21, 2010 — Today the European Parliament plenary adopted a report on completing the internal market for e-commerce prepared by Spanish rapporteur Pablo Arias Echeverría (EPP). The reports highlights the importance of an open document exchange format for electronic business interoperation and calls on the European Commission to take concrete steps to support its emergence and spread.

“Excellent. In the past European programmes promoted an Open Document exchange format in the field of e-Government. Strasbourg wants the Commission to follow up on its successful activities, this time with an eye to electronic business needs.”, explains interoperability expert André Rebentisch.

The Echeverría-Report does not end with interoperable office documents for electronic businesses.

Strasbourg also proposes other interoperability measures for electronic commerce. Most fundamentally the European Parliament acknowledges the “importance of open and neutral access to a high-speed internet connection, without which e-commerce would be impossible” and asks the Commission “to work towards creating rules and standards” to overcome the “non-interoperability of software on commercial and social networking websites”.

Furthermore Strasbourg “calls on the Commission to set up a European Validation Authorities Gateway to ensure cross-border interoperability for electronic signatures”.


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The FFII is a not-for-profit association registered in twenty European countries, dedicated to the development of information goods for the public benefit, based on copyright, free competition, open standards. More than 1000 members, 3,500 companies and 100,000 supporters have entrusted the FFII to act as their voice in public policy questions concerning exclusion rights (intellectual property) in data processing.

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