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High-level round table discussed how to grasp digital opportunities in technology, skills and data

Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment
Publication date 20.9.2019 12.44
Press release

On 20 September, Minister of Economic Affairs of Finland Katri Kulmuni hosted a round table discussion in Helsinki, Grasping the Digital Opportunity – Technology, Skills and Data, with ministers and high-level stakeholders from the Nordic countries and Estonia with a view to shaping the digital agenda.

The keynote speech was delivered by Google CEO Sundar Pichai, and remarks were delivered by Minister of Digitalisation of Norway Nikolai Astrup.

The aim of the round table was to discuss how to seize the opportunities of digitalisation and make the most of emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI), how to develop necessary digital skills and how to build a human-centric data economy.

“Finland is committed to promoting a sustainable digital economy where the digital transformation can strengthen the competitiveness of our businesses and increase the wellbeing of our citizens,” said Minister Kulmuni.

"At Google, we feel a deep responsibility to ensure that everyone can benefit from the opportunities that technology creates. We had a good discussion about the importance of skills for the new digital economy, and other topics. We're keen to play our part: in Europe we've already trained 5 million people in digital skills and we've just opened a skills hub in Helsinki. Finland is a great example of how the internet can help drive economic growth - and we're keen to continue the conversation," said CEO Pichai.

At the round table, Minister Kulmuni highlighted that data is an increasingly important raw material for the digital economy. Finland wants to emphasise the secure, responsible and ethically sustainable use of data. The principles and roadmap for this should be developed in a comprehensive way. Minister Kulmuni also stressed that the digital transformation is an important factor in Finland’s efforts to achieve carbon neutrality by 2035.

Key stakeholders participating in the round table discussion included high-level political leaders from Norway, Sweden, Estonia and Finland and CEOs from business and think tanks from Sweden, Denmark and Finland.

Jenny Hasu, Special Adviser to the Minister of Economic Affairs, tel. +358406583510
Nina Alatalo, Adviser to the Minister of Economic Affairs (International Affairs), tel. +358504318015
Mikko Koivumaa, Director of Communications, tel. +358503453555

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