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European Commission


Brasilia/Brussels, 23 April 2014

NETmundial: European Commission to take leading role at global conference on internet governance

The EU, represented by European Commission Vice President Neelie Kroes and EU Special Representative for Human Rights, Stavros Lambrinidis, is to participate at high level in “NETmundial: the Global Multi-stakeholder Meeting on the Future of Internet Gorvernance”, Sao Paulo on 23-24 April. Neelie Kroes is a member of the High Level committee of NETmundial and has contributed to the preparation of the Conference document.

Ms Kroes said about the initiative: “The next two years will be critical in redrawing the global map of internet governance. I commend President Rousseff for taking this initiative”. She added: The outcomes of NETmundial must be concrete and actionable, with clear milestones and timeline. Europe will contribute to finding a credible way forward for global internet governance.”

The European Commission is seeking to contribute actively to the debate to update the governance system for the internet.

The European Commission firmly supports a strengthened multistakeholder model for internet governance, based on transparent and democratic involvement of all relevant actors and groups, rather than a government-controlled internet. Ms Kroes said: “Top down approaches are not the right answer. We must strengthen the multi-stakeholder model to preserve the Internet as a fast engine for innovation”.

The EU is committed to an internet that continues to serve fundamental freedoms and human rights. Ms Kroes noted "Fundamental freedoms are not negotiable. They must be protected online”.

Ms Kroes has outlined six areas the European Commission will focus on at the conference:

  • Improvements to the multi-stakeholder model of governance (and resistance to calls for greater government-control) model

  • Strengthening the Internet Governance Forum

  • Providing tools and mechanisms for better information sharing and capacity building, so that a truly global debate and governance is possible

  • Globalising IANA (Internet Assigned Numbers Authority)

  • Globalisation of ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers)

  • Jurisdictional issues on the Internet


The European Commission issued its policy position on 12 February calling for more transparent, accountable and inclusive governance of internet. The document serves as a foundation for a common European approach in global internet governance negotiations, such at the NETmundial Conference this week, the Internet Governance Forum in September and the High Level ICANN meetings through 2014 and 2015.

Neelie Kroes has published her correspondence and updated policy positions on her blog posts from: 16 April and 11 April.

Useful links

Europe & the Internet in a global context Community

Communication "Internet Governance: Next Steps"

Neelie Kroes' website

To follow the EU position at NETmundial follow these twitter accounts:

@NeelieKroesEU and @RyanHeathEU


Email: Tel: +32.229.57361 Twitter: @RyanHeathEU

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