Two committees of the EUDCA held a joint committee meeting in London on Tuesday 20th March. The meeting was arranged on the basis that there is significant overlap between the Technical Committee and the Policy Committee of the association. Both committees have found themselves looking at common issues and it was decided that it would be beneficial to share knowledge and views and to determine if there were areas that would benefit from input from both sides. The meeting was an open meeting and both members and potential members of the EUDCA were invited to attend.
Two topics for discussion were selected to explore the feasibility of such a joint meeting and to keep discussions focussed. The EU Code of Conduct for Data Centres was the first topic for discussion. The EUDCA fully supports the EU Code of Conduct and is an Endorser of the code but there is a relatively low number of ‘Participant’ data centres when compared to the number in the market. The question to be addressed was ‘What can be done by the EUDCA to help encourage better numbers of data centres to become Participant status in the code?’ There was a detailed discussion of everything from the application process, the best practices included in the code and the reporting process. The meeting concluded that there may be some things that the association could do to help improve adoption of the EU Code of Conduct and that it would be looked at in more detail by both committees in their respective roles.
The second of the two topics for discussion was Energy Taxation. Data Centres are not recognised as ‘power intensive’ businesses and, as such, they do not benefit from any of the incentives and tax breaks that those recognised as power intensive industries do. There are significant differences in power taxation across Europe. Greece is currently negotiating with the EU to get recognition for data centres to be recognised as power intensive businesses. In the Nordics there are significant tax incentives to encourage data centres to be located there, but these seem to be on a local level. The meeting concluded that much more lobbying is required to ensure that data centres are recognised and understood within the EU.
Detailed minutes of the meeting will be available in due course. If anyone is interested in obtaining a copy of the minutes, they should email firstname.lastname@example.org with a request.