The ability to create enormous value in a very small space is one of the key attributes that Monaco has in common with the digital world. Surrounded on all sides by France and the Mediterranean, the Principality can now, thanks to digital technology, reach out to the entire planet and enjoy an unprecedented cycle of prosperity. It’s an ambition spearheaded by the Extended Monaco programme. Read on to learn more.
The advent of the digital era is redefining the global balance of power and reshaping the world economy in profound ways. The resulting social upheaval is something which needs to be taken into account and supported by governments in order to capitalise on and make best use of the opportunities presented by this new digital world. With this in mind, on 30 April this year H.S.H. the Sovereign Prince announced the creation of Extended Monaco, reflecting his determination to transform the Principality and write a new page in its history.
This Smart Principality project has three strands intended to make Monaco a “funding nation” for progress. They are: to massively improve the already exceptional quality of life, to deliver a new cycle of economic prosperity and to increase the value of public service. Actions will be rolled out over a three-year period. Some are already in place and changing the face of the country.
To help it succeed, Monaco can take advantage of the features that make it unique, eventually turning these features into assets. The country’s small footprint has allowed it to become the first country to enjoy full 5G coverage. The launch of the latest-generation network, the first pillar of the Smart Principality project, together with the implementation of fibre optic and the emergence of a sovereign cloud, marks the arrival of a new era of connected objects in the Principality.
“Becoming the ‘funding nation’ where progress is made and financed”
The first applications associated with this revolution are already visible: smart bus shelters and the self-driving shuttle offer two striking examples. These will soon be followed by other projects that make use of connected objects, such as the drone delivery services recently trialled by Monaco’s postal service.
The Principality’s capacity to invest and take action also weighs in the country’s favour, as does its brand, which is renowned the world over. In order to become the “funding nation” where progress is made and financed, an array of economic tools for the digital era is under development. The key projects are a cleantech investment fund, the introduction of environmentally-focused initial coin offerings (ICOs), a bill that provides a framework for the issue of blockchain tokens (including mandatory certification) and the rapid growth of the start-up incubator MonacoTech.
To ensure that people remain at the heart of this revolution, e-health will occupy a central place, with the aim of maintaining excellence and further improving the level of care available in the Principality, as well as the relationship between patients and doctors. Coding lessons in schools, to be introduced from 2019/2020, will help to involve future generations and their parents, giving them the best possible preparation for the transition to a digital world that takes better care of the environment and is more people-centric and increasingly interactive.