European Commission wants to open public sector data

The EC has designed some legislation to open up access to public sector data, in a move that could prove valuable to developers of smartphone applications such as maps or restaurant finders.

Apparently Europe thinks that such a move could generate an additional $53 billion in economic activity in the EU each year, the Commission said.

Transport and construction companies may benefit from easier access to weather information and geographical data could be tailored for smartphones.

Neelie Kroes, the EU commissioner for digital technology policy told Reuters that taxpayers had already paid for the information and the least governments can do is give it back to those who want to use it in new ways that help people and create jobs and growth.

The price of access to public information should be no more than the cost of releasing and reproducing that data. The plan is to standardise rules governing access to public data by individuals and companies across the 27 nation bloc and may be in place by 2013.

Ironically polices in France and Britain are being used as a model, which means that David Cameron does not have to make a fool of himself vetoing something else that is useful for the country.

The new law would not change legal protection on personal and intellectual property rights data, it has nothing to do with protecting David’s mates in the City from having to be investigated for making dodgy deals,  so David does not have veto it on those grounds either.