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Telecom.IT: PwC: Romania last in EU for digitalization

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Romania ranks last in EU for the digitalization of economy and society, said Dorian Farkas, senior manager financial consulting at PwC Romania, at a specialised conference on Wednesday.

He presented results of three stages carried out on this topic at world level, Romania ranking last in EU for each of them.

“All these studies take into account the human factor and the way in which countries use and adopt digital technologies. In a study made by the UN, Romania ranks last in EU. The classification shows the telecommunication infrastructure index, the human capital index and the online service index,” Farcas said.

The second study, DESI, made by the European Commission, takes into account digital competitiveness, shows that Romania ranks last in EU.

In this report, for human capital (Internet use, basic and advanced digital competences) Romania ranks 28th in EU, because of difficulties in attracting and keeping specialists to develop efficient digital public services.

Romania is also last in point of using the Internet (citizens using online content, communications and transactions) because 25% of people have never used the Internet and only 17% of companies use online technologies and communication means.

As for connectivity (fixed broadband services, mobile broadband services and prices) Romania ranks 22nd in EU, because of differences between urban and rural areas for mobile and Internet connections.

For digital technology integration (digitalization of companies and electronic trade), Romania ranks 28th in EU, because of the poor integration of IT systems in public administration, while public digital services (e-government and e-health) Romania is 26th because of the low degree of confidence in using online banking services and digital platforms.

The first countries in EU in DESI classification are Denmark, Finland, Sweden and the Netherlands.

The third study is IMD World and classifies Romania 20th of 21 countries in Europe and 54th of 63 in the world.

This report evaluates the knowledge needed for digital transformation in economy, the understanding and learning of new technologies, the technological factor which evaluates the frame of digitalization development (available capital, available infrastructure, legislative frame), as well as the absorption of digital technologies which supposes the capacity of the business environment to change in order to include innovation and adaptability to new digital tendencies.

Although Romania had a significant economic growth in the last 20 years, it is 1.2-2.5% per year under the growth recorded by countries in Eastern Europe which are in an advanced stage in point of government service digitalization (such as Estonia, Lithuania and Latvia).

At the same time, productivity in Romania is 50% smaller than that of countries ranking first in point of digitalization.

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