The EU4Digital Facility brought together 20 experts from the six Eastern Partnership (EaP) countries for a three-day ICT Innovation networking event around the issue of blockchain, which took place in Malaga, Spain on 11-13 November.
The networking event was aimed at EaP startups and scaleups, business associations, ICT infrastructure organisations and policy-makers related to blockchain, and took place on the occasion of Convergence – The Global Blockchain Congress 2019. The experts from the Eastern Partner countries were joined at the networking event by two experts from EU organisations to share good practices from the European Union.
The meeting enabled participants to gain better knowledge of the situation in the other countries of the EaP region, and to establish contacts with professionals and decision-makers from the EaP region and the European Union.
“This event was a good opportunity to learn about current state of affairs regarding blockchain regulations, standardization and application in different sectors of the economy, and the advantages and efficiency that blockchain technology can offer businesses and governments,” said Andrei Сușcă from the Ministry of Economy and Infrastructure of the Republic of Moldova. “Further cooperation on this issue with EU is needed in order to study best cases in this field and to transpose regulations, to benefit from educational and entrepreneurial projects, to stimulate growth of blockchain community in our country,” he added.
On 13 November, the main Global Blockchain Congress hosted a panel discussion focussed on the EaP region – ‘Digital innovations, blockchain and scale-ups in emerging markets’ – an opportunity for EU4Digital to deliver the vision about the region to the Convergence Congress participants (see presentation).
The joint work helped participants better understand each other and build up trust that will contribute to future collaboration. Participants reported establishing contacts with professionals and decision makers from EaP countries – on average 12 per person for approximately 240 connections in total – as well as from EU countries – on average 10 per person for approximately 20 connections in total.
Through the event, EU4Digital was also able to reach the attention of key policy makers and organisations covering for blockchain in EU, including the Director of the EU Digital Single Market, the Director of the European Blockchain Partnership policy group, and the Director of INATBA, the International Association for Trusted Blockchain Applications.
“The event was well organised, structured and efficient,” said Leyla Baghirzade, founder and president of the Global Oracle Association for Leaders (GOAL), who was one of the representatives from Azerbaijan in Malaga. “I liked the brainstorming process among all the participants that were there from the EaP and EU. I will be glad to continue the ideas that has been discussed during the event and realize them in the near future.”
As part of its focus on ICT Innovation, the European Union’s EU4Digital Initiative supports reforms and actions to favour the development of ICT research, start-ups & innovation ecosystems across the Eastern Partnership region, drawing from EU experience and best practices.