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  • Tech Journalist

7 EU states collaborate in the launch of €1.2 billion cloud project to reduce reliance on the US

The European Commission has approved aid of up to €1.2 billion from 7 member states to build a one-of-a-kind cloud and edge computing project across Europe. It’s all part of the EU’s plan to reduce reliance on Chinese and US firms and facilitate the growth of EU-based companies.

The project has been labeled IPCEI Next Generation Cloud Infrastructure and Services (IPCEI CIS), and it’s the brainchild of France, Germany, Italy, Hungary, Poland, Spain, and the Netherlands.

This initial €1.2 billion investment is expected to unlock another €1.4 billion in private funding. If the projects receiving aid turn out to be very profitable, generating extra net revenues, there’s a provision requiring that the companies return part of the aid.

The project is expected to create an initial 1,000 jobs for data scientists and AI pros and an additional 5,000 jobs once it enters the commercialization phase.

IPCEI CIS becomes the 6th IPCEI to be approved since 2018 with others being in batteries, hydrogen, and microelectronics and communication technologies.

The cloud technology project 19 companies including Atos, Orange, Deutsche Telekom, Siemens, Telecom Italia, and Telefonica Espana. These companies will be tasked with building the first interoperable and openly accessible European data processing ecosystem, the multi-provider cloud-to-edge continuum.

Businesses and individuals in the EU will have access to software and data-sharing tools that enable federated, energy-efficient, and trustworthy cloud and edge-distributed data processing technologies.

"The IPCEI will provide for highly ambitious research, necessary to enable the uptake of innovative data processing applications and services for European businesses, public administrations, and citizens," Commissioner Didier Reynders, head of the EU’s competition policy, said.

The goal is to have open-source software that will allow for real-time and low-latency services.

R&D and the first industrial deployment phase will last until 2031, with the first result, an open-source reference infrastructure, due around the end of 2027.


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