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In pictures: President Ilves spoke about cross-border e-services in Helsinki

In pictures: President Ilves spoke about cross-border e-services in Helsinki © Jussi Hellsten (Slush 2013)


"Our wish is to make e-services transnational and compatible with neighbouring countries," President Toomas Hendrik Ilves said today in Helsinki at the international IT and startup conference Slush.

President Ilves gave an example of how a Finnish pensioner visiting Pärnu could fill a digital prescription written in his or her homeland in Estonian pharmacies. "We can start co-operating with neighbouring Nordic and Baltic countries and move on to the rest of Europe," he added. The Head of State noted that transnational safety regulations and standards are a prerequisite for this kind of co-operation.

At the conference Slush, held in Helsinki for the sixth time, with experts and enthusiasts from across the world participating, President Ilves spoke about current challenges, threats and opportunities in IT, and introduced Estonian e-government, e-services and startup companies.

The Estonian e-government services are used by nearly 100 per cent of the population, the majority of bank transactions are made online, 25 per cent of votes are given electronically, 97 per cent of tax returns are submitted electronically and prescription drugs are obtained in pharmacies with digital prescriptions. Estonians have given more than 140 million digital signatures.

In addition to the Estonian President, the speakers included several influential people, including the former CEO of Skype Niklas Zennström, former CEO of Nokia Jorma Ollila, and the Finnish Prime Minister Jyrki Katainen.

This evening, the Head of State will leave for Berlin to chair the meeting of the Steering Board of the European Cloud Partnerhip, which aims to promote the use of cross-border digital public services in businesses and the public sector across Europe. President Ilves became the head of the steering board last year at the request of the European Commission. The board's last meeting was held this summer in Tallinn.

On Thursday, President Ilves will give an opening speech at the cloud computing conference "Readiness for Cloud Computing in the European Public Sector" organised by the European Commission.

The Head of State returns to Estonia late on Thursday.

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