Historical archive

Focusing on ICT will to promote value creation and growth

Historical archive

Published under: Stoltenberg's 2nd Government

Publisher Ministry of Government Administration, Reform and Church Affairs

Greater focus on broadband, digital participation, advanced ICT competence and digitalisation in business and industry are among the measures that will be implemented to promote value creation and competitiveness. This is one of the conclusions in the white paper ‘Digital agenda for Norge: IKT for vekst og verdiskaping’, which the government presented today.

Greater focus on broadband, digital participation, advanced ICT competence and digitalisation in business and industry are among the measures that will be implemented to promote value creation and competitiveness. This is one of the conclusions in the white paper ‘Digital agenda for Norge: IKT for vekst og verdiskaping’, which the government presented today.

'ICT contributes to value creation and growth in all industries and in society at large. According to a study, fifty per cent of productivity growth in Europe can be attributed to the use of ICT and the internet. Targeted use of ICT will be decisive in relation to future employment and economic growth. The government therefore wishes to ensure that Norwegian society makes use of all the possibilities ICT offers,' says Minister of Government Administration, Reform and Church Affairs Rigmor Aasrud.

The government wants Norway to be one of the leading markets for digital services. It is important that both private and public service providers can feel sure that they can reach the whole population with their digital services. By ensuring that people have access to broadband and basic digital competence, the government will facilitate increased demand for digital services.

'We also want a fully digitalised public sector and a private sector that conducts its business digitally. To achieve this, we must have good access to ICT competence. We will achieve this by ensuring good capacity and quality in all areas of ICT education,' says Aasrud.

These are some of the government's ambitions:

Everyone shall have access to broadband and be capable of mastering digital services
The white paper states that broad digital participation is a competitive advantage for Norway. It creates a market for digital goods and services, both public and commercial. At present, 270,000 Norwegians are not online. The government aims to halve this number. Everyone should also have a broadband service that is of a good basic quality. The government will allocate at least NOK 150 million a year to the development of broadband networks in areas that are not commercially profitable.

Wishes to promote digital business processes in the private sector
The government's goal is that business and industry should be as digital as possible. The government wishes to facilitate digital solutions in order to rationalise business processes and trade across national borders. The government will set an example by developing public digital services aimed at citizens, organisations and business and industry. Consumers shall have access to efficient electronic payment solutions as an alternative to cash.

Investing in specialist expertise and programmes of professional study
The education programmes offered in ICT must reflect the needs of the future rather than the current situation. Norway needs specialised core competence in informatics and interdisciplinary education programmes where informatics is included. Among other things, the government will endeavour to identify obstacles to recruitment to education programmes in ICT, map future competence requirements and take steps to facilitate simple and efficient recruitment of necessary labour from abroad. ICT is also an important part of compulsory and further education for all occupational groups. The government wishes to increase the focus on ICT in important programmes of professional study, for example in care services.

The government will establish a national strategy for ICT-related R&D. The government will introduce a trial PhD scheme earmarked for ICT in the public sector. The scheme will be modelled on the Industrial PhD scheme.

Wishes to release public data
The government wishes to see more publicly funded data and digital content being made available to everyone. The government announces that the provisions of the Freedom of Information Act concerning the pricing of data for further use will be reviewed. Through more open public data sets, the government wishes to promote the development of new services, contribute to new methods for democratic control and rationalise the public sector.

ICT and climate
In the time ahead, the government wants to take steps to facilitate 'green ICT' in order to reduce energy consumption and emissions relating to the production and use of ICT. It will also work to replace physical products that emit extensive greenhouse gases with digital alternatives with small or no emissions. By making targeted use of ICT, the government wishes to reduce energy consumption, the use of materials, and emissions in e.g. the transport and retail sectors and traditional industry.