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Czechia ranks 19th and Slovakia 23rd in the Digital Economy and Society Index (DESI) 2021 (Where Denmark ranks no.1), and have continuously been developing in recent years.

 

Both countries have shown a nice and steady growth in the last five years. This is attributed to the increased digitisation efforts, interest and support from the respective governments.


Digitisation Development is inevitable

The two countries, located in the Central and Eastern Europe region, are seriously planning rapid progression in digitisation. Further development is inevitable, and this provides a perfect opportunity for Danish companies that can provide experienced solutions and consultation at all stages. The general tendency is to digitise the most popular and state-critical services where, for example, also enormous savings can be achieved.

 

The countries have been working on their own versions of a digital identity, e-services, citizen’s portals, e-procurement, e-taxes, an e-health system, and various other public-private sector services, intended to connect the two sectors better, and make communication easier from one to the other.

Covid-19 increased a need for digital tools. To enable further digitisation, e-Government projects are heavily funded by Czechia's National Recovery Plan, which focuses on digitisation, and of which 22% of the financial allocation is planned to be spent on digitisation, sounding to a total approximate of:

DKK: 10.9 billion

CZK: 37.5 billion

EUR: 1.5 billion

The six core pillars of Czechia's recovery plans

Additionally, the NextGenEU Recovery Plan is the overarching umbrella for the Recovery and Resilience Facility (RRF), of which the scope for Czechia consists of six core pillars.

Important to the country is digitisation of the following areas:

1. Green transformation

2. Digital transformation

3. Smart, sustainable and inclusive growth (incl. economic cohesion, jobs, productivity, competitiveness, research, development and innovation, and a functioning single market for strong SMEs)

4. Social and territorial cohesion

5. Health, economic, social and institutional resilience (incl. with focus on increasing crisis response and preparedness

6. Policies for the "next generation", children and youth (incl. education and skills)

The current digitised solutions in Czechia are not fully utilised to their potential, and have not been successful in attracting a large user-base. Only half of individuals who need to submit official forms to public administrations do so electronically (the EU average is 67%).

 

Despite the government’s effort to promote the digital use of public services, the number of e-government users is growing at a slow pace. At the end of 2019, the central Citizen’s Portal was already offering 120 services online, but it had only 45 000 registered users, in a country with a population of almost 11 mill.

2022 - concrete projects in the new year

A desire for digitisation in Czechia and strong engagement has resulted in concrete multiannual plans. In Digitising and Innovating Czechia, clear main goals have been established, and 2022 is showing focus on certain particular areas:

 

  • User-friendly And Efficient "On-line" Services For Citizens And Companies
  • Digitally Friendly Legislation
  • Development Of A Digital Technology Environment In The Field Of e-Government
  • Increasing The Capacity And Competencies Of Staff In Public Administration
  • Efficient And Centrally Coordinated ICT (Information and Communications Technology) of Public Administration
  • Digitally Effective And Flexible Administration
  • Digital Economy And Society, Innovative Start-ups And New Technologies
  • Digital Business Transformation
  • Acceleration And Digitisation Of Construction Proceedings
The setup of a Master Data Infrastructure is of high importance to the execution of all the given plans. The interconnectivity and access to Master Data is a foundation necessary, in enabling the Digitisation and Innovation of e-Government, Public Administration Information Systems, the Architectural Principals for the Design and Development of Information Systems and their Services, incl. IT Department Management.

Open opportunity for Danish companies

We at the Embassy of Denmark in Prague - Trade Council, during the last 1.5 decade, have seen Czechs and Slovaks go through adaptation to an increase of activities being done online.

 

From retail shopping in the beginning, gaining trust in online payments and internet banking, to gradually being introduced to digital post, online registers and online form submissions for municipal and state matters, amongst other things.

 

The countries have the cultural and technological foundation to progress further.

 

This has paved way for further digitisation development within the public and state sectors, however being still behind of the level of digitisation in Denmark, as public resistance and lack of full adaptability, has historically been higher in Czechia and Slovakia.

 

These aspects among others, are the reasons why the two countries look towards Denmark for expertise and knowledge.

 

The state interests and efforts in the two countries have meant that in recent years, the digitisation development has increased in speed.

The pandemic and the introduction of the NextGenEU Recovery Plan and Fund, have further accelerated the digitisation development, prompting many initiatives that have created the opportunity for outside experts to consult and / or build solutions, based on best practices and experiences from successfully implemented projects in their own market.

Denmark has been a model country for a long time, when it comes to Digitisation (understandably, with Denmark ranking no. 1 in the DESI 2021), and we are at a level of digitisation where Czechia and Slovakia are heading next. Thus, it is only natural to connect Danish solution providers with Czech and Slovak Stakeholders, in the next stages that will build the future infrastructure and modernisation in these countries.

Danish companies can play a crucial role in the digital transformation of Czechia, Slovakia and Cee

Danish companies have a long-standing track-record, successfully implementing numerous digital solutions, facilitating better servicing to citizens and private sector companies.

 

Some of the key elements to this have been the ‘customer-centric’ approach during all stages of development, and the communication and focus on adaptability and promotion of the solutions.

 

The Danish Agency for Digitisation allocates a big part of their time and efforts into planning and executing a thorough communication and promotion strategy. It is an area where Czechia and Slovakia needs better addressing. This too creates an opportunity for Danish companies to provide consultation, from their expertise and experience.

 

Facilitation of introductions between Danish and Czech / Slovak stakeholders is of high importance, in order to embark on Czech and Slovak planned projects, or potentially planned in the two countries.

Danish Companies should consider collaborating with local, existing companies on the market, and must consider the type of involvement that would suit them best: consultant, advisor, product / solution offer (already developed or future tailor-made) or partnership with a Czech company.

The future of digitisation in Czechia and Slovakia, and the best practices and expertise advantage of using Danish solution providers and companies does not stop at the digitisation level, but must absolutely include the agencies and organisations that are responsible for public promotion and communication.

 

This aspect of digitisation implementation is very important, especially for Czechia and Slovakia, as a good portion of the public in these countries have reservations concerning a traditional approach and mentality towards public sector administrative matters.

 

The Embassy of Denmark in Czechia - Trade Council can help Danish companies establish contact with public and private actors as well as government agencies, for current and future digitisation projects and with potential partners.

Danish companies have experience and technologies that can play a crucial role in the digital transformation in Czechia, Slovakia and the rest of the CEE region.

Contact us

Read more about the Trade Council in Czechia here.

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