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Data protection and EU parliament elections issues

Staff writer |
Industrialists and diplomats have accused members of the European Parliament of rushing through data protection laws that they say would boost their electoral chances more than Europe's economies.

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Parliamentary elections are to be held next year. At a data protection and privacy conference in Brussels organised by Forum Europe, policymakers and the information technology industry clashed over the timeline of the draft EU data protection law. The draft regulation proposed in January 2012 is currently being negotiated among MEPs before a vote in the Parliament's civil liberties (LIBE) committe.

Paul Nemitz, director for Fundamental Rights and Citizenship at the European Commission's DG Just, said that for those companies who take their customers serious as valuable partners and think about the future and what it means in terms of data protection the new rules will not be a big deal.

"If you are operating cross-borders, your life is likely to become easier. Why? Because in the future, we'll have one law in form of a regulation rather than 28 implementing laws based on a directive and we will have a consistency mechanism," said Mr. Nemitz. He added that everyone will benefit from the new rules and they will essentially be a boost to the economy and to the protection of the individual.

"I think we should all work together to get this act through the Council and the Parliament before the next Parliament elections and those who keep being bigoted and wanting changes, they may carry the responsibility that we will not be able to come up with this boost for the economy," said Mr. Nemitz.director stated.

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