Industry hails EU vote ‘extra time’

European UnionFears that the new EU data protection laws could be railroaded through the European Parliament have proved unfounded following news that the final vote has been put back until at least the end of May.
The move, welcomed by the DMA – which is spearheading the UK fight against many of the proposals – will give the civil liberties, justice and home affairs committee (LIBE) more time to debate the measures. At the last count, there were said to be at least 3,000 amendments on the table.
DMA boss Chris Combemale said: “The only thing that is important is legislation that achieves the right balance between the interests of people and the interests of business. Taking the time to carefully consider amendments which help achieve this balance is crucial, and we encourage the Parliament to be thoughtful in their deliberations.”
Reports suggest the vote was delayed in order to concentrate on the fallout from the Cyprus banking crisis, although observers believe it was always ambitious to get the proposals fully debated within the timeframe.
EC justice commissioner Viviane Reding – the architect of the proposed shake up – recently claimed she was working “very hard” to ensure the new Regulation will be in the statute book within 12 months – triggering fears it would be rushed through.
At the time she said: “A uniform and modern data protection law for the European Union is exactly what we need to secure trust and generate growth in the digital single market. I am working very hard to make sure that by next year’s Data Protection Day [in January] this reform will be in the statute book.”

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