On 5 June 2018 a conference was held in Sofia as a part of the ELF project Smart Solutions for Digital Economy in South East Europe. The project is supported by the Liberal Institute for Political Analysis and with the partnership of Institute for Liberal Studies, Romania; International Educational Centre, Croatia; Friedrich Namann Foundation Sofia. The project is part of ELF content coordinated “New Economic Models”. The ai of the project is by sharing experience within and outside the Southeast Europe region to bring it closer to the most advance. Thus we would like to promote the development to a more coherent and advanced digital single market and digital economy. The specific topics are:
– to promote digital economy and to share advanced experience in order to stimulate economic growth;
– to advocate for liberal solutions for faster development and integration in the Digital Single Market;
– to discuss new needs of public investment to speed up the digitalization of the economy to support growh and jobs;
– to discuss the role of the sharing/platform economy in transforming business and market economy;
According to the Digital Economy and Society Index (DESI) of the European Commission disparities between different member states in all dimensions of the study are bigger than expected. Bulgaria and Romania, together with other countries from the region occupy the last places. Only 1/6 of Bulgarians compared to EU average are using internet banking and Romanians who purchase online are 1/5 of EU average. During the Conference, liberal solutions for the digital economy development were be looked for in business circles, academia and practitioners. Given the big share of private investment in the sector, there is a room for smart public investment and public-private partnership.