Business leaders from around the world met in Brussels last week to discuss ways of improving communications between governments and industry on critical internet issues.
In an initiative put forward by European Commissioner Martin Bangemann, the group set up the Global Business Dialogue consortium as a platform for discussion between the public and private sectors. Conflicting policies, rules and regulations are seen by the group as hampering the progress of an online economy.
In a statement, Bangemann said: 'I have challenged the private sector to come forward with its own proposals for removing the legal and technical uncertainties which are hampering the take-off of the global online economy.'
The group, which included representatives from Microsoft, Intel, Oracle, Sony and Sun, identified the most urgent issues for industry as being taxation, tariffs, intellectual property rights, encryption, authentication, data protection and liability. A business steering committee has been set up to sort out the proposals.
Bangemann said the aim of the Global Business Dialogue was to ensure 'a consistent approach by public and private sectors at a global level so that... policy making keeps up with technological developments'. Details of the first Global Business Dialogue conference, planned for 1999, will be released in September.
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