According to reports, the European Union plans to boost technological development in the region by investing $177 billion.
Bloomberg reports that EU officials intend to invest directly in areas such as blockchain, data infrastructure and quantum computing.
The $177 billion investment fund represents 20% of the €887 billion stimulus package that EU leaders agreed to in July 2020 to help kickstart economic recovery during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
On Wednesday, Ursula von der Leyen (President of the European Commission) stressed the importance to invest in digital technology throughout the region.
As EU officials try to avoid a repeat of the global semiconductor shortage, a portion of the investment fund will be used to manufacture low-power processors.
The EU has not yet revealed the focus areas of the $177 billion technology fund. However, it does not provide information about the investment amount in each sector.
Related: A survey finds that Europeans want crypto regulation to be done in their own countries, and not by the EU
The Iota Foundation was selected, along with six companies, to support the development of the European Blockchain Service Infrastructure, an EU-wide distributed ledger technology project.
The International Association of Trusted Blockchain Applications was established by the EU in April 2019. It is charged with supporting and encouraging DLT adoption within the region.
Blockchain has been identified by EU officials as one of the most important emerging technologies that could influence Europe’s future. EU officials have been pushing for regional legal standards that will prevent regulatory fragmentation.
A recent survey however has shown that most Europeans prefer to have national regulations for blockchain and crypto than a European standard.
In the meantime, the United States and the EU may soon collaborate on the drafting of standards for crypto- and blockchain regulation.