Portugal is 19th among the 28 EU member-states in the 2019 Digital Economy and Society Index, presented this Tuesday by the European Commission.
Portugal is 19th among the 28 EU member-states in the 2019 Digital Economy and Society Index, presented this Tuesday by the European Commission. The country is losing ground for the second year in a row to countries with better strategies for implementing digital public services, internet spread and companies’ digitalisation, Lusa revealed.
According to the European Commission, Portugal has shown a slightly better global performance (46.8) than in 2018, as well as in four out of five criteria, but it has not improved its overall classification.
The most significant improvement that the country has made happened within the digital public services, scoring 71.4 points and surpassing the EU’s average of 62.9. This can be explained due to a considerable increase in online public administration users.
According to the report, the country performed weakly in human capital (35.2 points, 12.8 points below the EU average) and in the usage of internet services (44.5 points, 8.9 points below the EU average), explained by the high number of people who do not use the internet regularly (23%, twice than the EU average).
In a comment to ECO, Maria da Graça Carvalho (Former Portuguese MEP and advisor for the Science Advice Mechanism Unit of the European Commission) said that “Portugal needs an increased effort in training at three different levels.” For the Former Portuguese MEP and Former Minister of Science and Higher Education, Portugal would strongly benefit from:
- “training more technicians and engineers in Computer Science, Electronics and Programming”;
- “conveying knowledge and digital skills to every student, regardless of their degree of education and knowledge on the matter”;
- “conferring basic digital skills to adults and senior people”.
Aligned with the European Commission, Maria da Graça Carvalho believes there are significant signs of progress, but “it will only be possible to benefit from those existing digital public services and infrastructures” if some effort is put into those three areas.