Ref. Ares(2017)1248292 - 09/03/2017
Final minutes from the European Cloud Partnership Steering
Brussels, 13 February 2014
Main conclusions from the meeting:
The Steering Board is widely supportive
of the current draft Vision document on
Trusted Cloud Europe – TCE.
The Steering Board wishes to accelerate the finalisation of this document
, so that the
future actions envisaged by the document can be undertaken.
Comments are to be elicited though consultation with the public
on the basis of a
publishable version of the document, to be developed within the next two weeks
Minor comments were made which will be integrated by the end of the week of 17
February. A new version is to be circulated at that time, allowing the Sherpas to provide
any further comments for one more week. A final version of the document will thus be
available by the end of February
In principle this was the final meeting of the Steering Board; however, the chairman
reserved the option to call for an additional Steering Board meeting if needed
It was noted to be important to get back to the Council with the result of the work. This
will require full active support from Member States and from all SB members.
o End-February: finalisation of Vision document;
o Mid-March: obtaining final approval from SB, publication and consultation;
o Mid-April: stepping up efforts to make the work of the ECP visible to the
Council for the forthcoming Council meeting (May 2014).
The Steering Board meeting was organized in Brussels at the Hotel Silken Berlaymont, on 13 February
2014, convening from 10h00 to 12h30, with the following agenda:
10h00-10h10 Welcome address by President Toomas Hendrik Ilves
10h10-10h20 Welcome by Neelie Kroes, Vice-President of the European Commission,
responsible for the Digital Agenda for Europe
10h20-10h35 Update on the three working group activities and outputs (Public Sector Due
Diligence, Public Sector Pilots, and Private Sector); representatives to be
10h35-10h50 Presentation of the consensus document by the rapporteur H. Graux
10h50-12h25 Discussion of the consensus document by the Steering board
12h25-12h35 Update on the status of ongoing Cloud Strategy activities – Standards
mapping and standardised contracts (including SLAs) by Ken Ducatel (Head
12h35-12h50 Discussion of next steps for the ECP – promotion of the consensus
document, including towards the Council
12h50-13h00 Concluding remarks and closing of the Steering Board meeting by Pres. Ilves
The Steering Board members are welcomed by President Ilves, who thanked the Sherpas for the very
substantial work so far, and outlined today’s objective of evaluating and finalizing the efforts. He
welcomes the approach of the Vision document, the concept of the Trusted Cloud Europe (TCE), and
the two task pillars foreseen in the document. Two key aspects which must be strongly emphasized
in the final document are the importance of risk assessment to make informed cloud choices, and the
importance of flexibility in order to keep up with technological change.
Vice-President Kroes acknowledges the positive work done so far, and recalls the need to continue
working at a high pace. The Vision document provides us with a new brand name: the TCE. It will be
important to establish this in the market and towards policy makers. Both President Ilves and Vice-
President Kroes repeat that our goal must be to set the framework for political decisions, and to put
the TCE on the political agenda.
Report and discussions on the Vision document and the TCE
The rapporteur Hans Graux presents the Vision document, the work done by the Working Groups of
the ECP, and the goals and actions of the TCE.
A discussion on the document and the TCE follows, led by President Ilves. All Steering Board
members are invited to provide their feedback on the Vision document and the TCE. Overall, the
members are widely and explicitly supportive of the work, the Vision document and the TCE. Several
Steering Board members indicate that they have "tested" the TCE vision document with their
constituency (customers etc), and support was near universal. The TCE label itself is welcomed as a
solid approach that could act as a European brand.
Several smaller issues are requested to be adjusted in the TCE vision document:
M. Posch welcomed the document as a good basis for future action, and suggested that one
of the follow-up actions might be to list cloud needs for the public sector (e.g. redundancy,
backups, replacement of a provider in case of failures or bankruptcy, standards compliance,
government controlled cryptography, etc.).
M. de Brisis similarly supported the document, but requested a check to ensure
terminological consistency (e.g. on declaration-accreditation-certification, or categories of
data). Realism would be needed: we should be able to work on a step by step basis, including
for any national reviews of legislation. The EU could facilitate this work by providing a
common platform to Member States. The urgency for action is still there but should allow for
small steps; this is also true for any calls for reviews of policy, legislation or data location
requirements: the text must be clear that this is a stepwise process where changes will be
made when circumstances are mature.
M. Breton offered congratulations on the work done, and particularly welcomed the creation
of a roadmap for future action. Now we need to move fast to implement the vision
presented here. Consistency between the various ECP documents is however crucial,
including in terms of timing; this will need to be checked. M. Breton recalled that the outputs
of ongoing work (SLA, code of conduct, certification scheme) should be made available for
consultation as soon as they are in a sufficiently mature version, which was understood to be
expected by the end of March. This is crucial to show concrete results for the action points
referenced in the vision document, and to obtain feedback before the end of 2014.
Ms. Dubarry supports the global approach, and notes that France considers the efforts
around best practices, support to SMEs and the implementation of a cloud label to be crucial.
The TCE label should not only guarantee security and safety levels and SLA, but also data
location and applicable regulations. Self-declarations of compliance are less convincing.
French authorities also express strong reserves about any actions that would lead to the
elimination of national regulations regarding data location, as it raises extremely important
security and sovereignty concerns. France would additionally prefer to see more explicit
references to the importance of supporting the development of a European cloud industrial
offer (for example, through innovation and R&D or support for small software editors in the
evolution of their offer towards SaaS). With respect to procurements, France stresses the
need to respect flexibility and national autonomy in making appropriate procurement
M. Vogels supported the document, and stressed the importance of a pragmatic, usable and
user friendly approach. Working examples of best practices exist, and should be re-used
where possible. Best practices should be supported where appropriate, although care should
be taken not to make these mandatory; we should avoid creating new legacy.
M. Van den Wyngaert welcomed the consistent references to the interests of users which
were made at EuroCIO’s requests. It supports the call for expedient follow-up action, and
supported the remarks made by President Ilves to more explicitly reference the need for
solid risk assessment. References to the importance of the Data Protection Regulation were
similarly welcomed. Finally, EuroCIO is skeptical on the unambiguous support for ‘cloud first’
procurement policies; this should be sufficiently nuanced.
M.Kotteman is positive towards cloud first policies, provided that such policies are well
defined and targeted. However, they are dependent on the prior creation of trusted clouds:
privacy, security, liability all need to be ensured first, before any such policies can be
M. Fredrikson declares to be fully supportive of the document, and supports cloud first
procurement policies. He similarly indicates the importance of moving quickly, and declares
his willingness to support the indicated pilots, including particularly the Transparent
M. Hange supports the document, and encourages all ECP members to move expediently in
implementing the planned actions, focusing on building a strong consensus between
businesses and public administrations.
The members supported the need to finalize the document quickly in order to publish it and move on
with future actions. It is agreed that the Vision document should be made publicly available for
consultation, in accordance with the following timeline:
A new version incorporating the aforementioned smaller updates should be shared within a
week of this meeting;
By the end of February: finalisation of TCE vision document;
By Mid-March: obtaining final approval from the Steering Board, followed by publication and
By Mid-April: stepping up efforts to make the work of the ECP visible to the Council for the
forthcoming Council meeting (May 2014).
The state of the art for key actions (SLAs, certification schemes and Codes of Conduct) is briefly
presented by Ken Ducatel. President Ilves calls for the ECP members to remain willing to reconvene if
necessary to push the planned initiatives forward. Both President Ilves and Vice-President Kroes
indicate their satisfaction with the outcome of the meeting and the ECP process in general. President
Ilves closes the Steering Board meeting at 12h40.