Italy anticipates a bid near the end of September from companies interested in creating a national cloud hub.
A government minister said on Saturday the project costs 900 million euros and will upgrade Italy’s data storage facilities.
The European Union funds the cloud hub to assist in Itlay’s recovery from the pandemic.
The cloud project will make the 27 members of the bloc more independent in terms of cloud services, instead of relying on overseas tech companies.
“I’m confident we will receive some expressions of interest close to the end of this month,” Innovation Minister Vittorio Colao said.
Minister Colao is the former head of the telecommunications company Vodafone.
The cloud’s role in Europe’s independence
“Europe’s Technological independence is crucial because it allows it to negotiate with foreign partners as equals,” Colao continued.
He added that he had discussed the project with the Finance Minister of France, Bruno Le Maire, at the conference.
According to Reuters, Rome allocated 900 million euros for the project and sent the recovery plan to Brussels in April.
Moreover, sources say that the Italian state lender, Cassa Depositi e Prestiti, considered an alliance with Telecom Italia and defense group Leonardo in June to start the project.
Officials said that companies like Google, Amazon and Microsoft could give their cloud technology to the cloud hub if licensed.
Those US tech companies are the three giants dominating the data storage business.
However, this raises concerns over the risk of US surveillance in light of the 2018 US Cloud Act.
This means US-based technology companies have to give the data to Washington even when stored outside the US.