MEP Mar­lene Mizzi pro­mot­ing en­trepreneur­ship in the dig­i­tal era

Malta Independent - - NEWS -

MEP Mar­lene Mizzi last week hosted a con­fer­ence in the Euro­pean Par­lia­ment on op­por­tu­ni­ties and chal­lenges faced by en­trepreneurs in the new era of digi­ti­sa­tion of the econ­omy and the ad­vent of the col­lab­o­ra­tive econ­omy ‘Re­think­ing Employment: Are mi­croen­trepreneurs the future?’

At the well-at­tended event, sci­en­tists, stake­hold­ers, MEPs and rep­re­sen­ta­tives of the Com­mis­sion sparked an in­ter­est­ing dis­cus­sion on the is­sues sur­round­ing the dig­i­tal­i­sa­tion of the sin­gle mar­ket, the ben­e­fits and the chal­lenges of digi­ti­sa­tion for mi­cro en­ter­prises, and in par­tic­u­lar, the chang­ing way in which we think about en­trepreneur­ship and employment.

Dur­ing the event, MEP Mar­lene Mizzi stressed that “whilst the Union must fully re­alise the po­ten­tial and op­por­tu­ni­ties of­fered by the in­ter­net and e-com­merce for the future de­vel­op­ment of the sin­gle mar­ket, we also need to re­alise that there are a num­ber of chal­lenges that might af­fect con­sumers, work­ers and tra­di­tional busi­ness providers and sup­pli­ers.” MEP Mizzi added that this has been par­tic­u­larly en­er­gised around the rapid growth of the col­lab­o­ra­tive econ­omy and ap­pear­ance of var­i­ous dig­i­tal plat­forms and web­sites such as Uber and Airbnb.

MEP Mizzi said: “Col­lab­o­ra­tive econ­omy is a new model of economic ac­tiv­ity em­pow­er­ing con­sumers to cap­i­talise on their own prop­erty and skills and pro­vid­ing a new range of op­por­tu­ni­ties for mi­cro-en­trepreneur­ship. This makes it dif­fi­cult to es­tab­lish some­times: Who is the con­sumer, who is the em­ployer and the em­ployee and who is the en­tre­pre­neur and the busi­ness.”

In con­clu­sion, Ms Mizzi pointed out that “in the com­ing months EU leg­is­la­tors need to look very closely at the dy­nam­ics of change so as not to sti­fle economic ben­e­fits emerg­ing from these new economic mod­els, whilst at the same time safe­guard­ing ex­ist­ing employment rights, high qual­ity work­ing con­di­tions and so­cial wel­fare schemes, and en­sure that a real level play­ing field in the sin­gle mar­ket is main­tained. This is espe­cially true given cit­i­zens’ ap­pre­hen­sions that are driv­ing the back­lash against glob­al­i­sa­tion,” said MEP Mizzi.

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