A document detailing how government is going to support the development of the digital economy over the next decade has been published.
The Digital Sector Strategic Framework sets out 10 strategic actions for the States of Guernsey. These include:
- targeting high-value, low footprint, digital industries
- direct government support to stimulate the digital economy (micro-economics)
- establishing a flexible and world class digital infrastructure
- delivering responsive legislation and regulation
- creating a robust and successful data protection framework
It is expected that actions from the framework, which will form part of the Committee for Economic Development's work on the Policy & Resource Plan, to be debated in June, will help generate increased economic revenue in terms of tax take from sector growth and new job creation.
Deputy Andrea Dudley-Owen, the Committee for Economic Development member who leads on digital, said Guernsey was well-placed to seize opportunities that the growing digital sector offers.
'The information services sector was Guernsey's third largest in terms of employment in 2015, with more than 1,000 people working in it. We hope this figure will grow within the next decade. The upskilling of our current workforce and students is I believe essential to support this growth. If this can be achieved, the increase in value to the economy and government revenues would be significant. As such this framework, and the action plans that will be generated as a result of it, is a critical priority for the Committee for Economic Development.'
The digital economy is a catch-all term, which includes sectors such as; IT support services, software and web developers, creative digital designers, finance technology (FinTech), data centres and telecoms operators.
Colin Vaudin, States of Guernsey Chief Information Officer, said the aim is to develop Guernsey into a location of choice for high-value, low impact, digital businesses, a centre of excellence in FinTech, and a recognised test-bed location for new products.
'The recently-announced first commercial deployment of blockchain technology is proof that Guernsey has the necessary regulatory framework and infrastructure for innovation today. This framework will support government and business as they look to capitalise on the significant opportunities that exist in this fast-growing sector in the years to come. For technology firms Guernsey is a great place to do business today, this framework aims to help the island become a global leader in the future.'