EU adopts ‘adequacy’ decisions allowing data to continue to flow freely to UK



  • The European Union (EU) has officially recognized the UK’s high data protection standards after more than a year of constructive talks
  • This will allow the continuous flow of personal data from the EU to the UK

Personal data can continue to flow freely between Europe and the UK following the agreement of the European Union to adopt “data adequacy” decisions.

The UK government welcomes the move, which rightly recognizes the country’s high data protection standards. The formal adoption of decisions under the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and Law Enforcement Directive (LED) allows personal data to flow freely from the EU and the ‘European Economic Area (EEA) in the United Kingdom. The rulings mean that UK businesses and organizations can continue to receive personal data from the EU and EEA without having to make additional arrangements with their European counterparts.

This free flow of personal data supports business, innovation and investment, helps law enforcement agencies fight crime, and supports the delivery of essential public services that share personal data and facilitate research. scientific and health.

The UK, which now has a fully independent data policy, has already recognized EU and EEA member states as ‘adequate’ as part of its commitment to establish a smooth transition from the outset of the United Kingdom of the block.

The government plans to promote the free flow of personal data globally and across borders, including through ambitious new trade agreements and new data adequacy agreements with some of the fastest growing economies, while ensuring that people’s data continues to be protected at a high level.

All future decisions will be based on what maximizes innovation and keeps pace with changing technology. As such, the government’s approach will seek to minimize burdens on organizations seeking to use data to tackle some of the world’s most pressing issues, including climate change and disease prevention.

Digital Secretary of State Oliver Dowden said:

After more than a year of constructive talks, it is only fair that the European Union has officially recognized the UK’s high data protection standards.

This will be good news for business, support continued UK-EU cooperation and help law enforcement authorities keep people safe.

Now we’ll focus on harnessing the power of data to drive innovation and fuel the economy while ensuring people’s safety and privacy is protected.

John Foster, CBI Policy Director, said:

This breakthrough in the EU-UK adequacy decision will be welcomed by businesses across the country.

The free flow of data is the foundation of the modern economy and essential for businesses in all sectors – from automotive to logistics – playing an important role in the daily trade of goods and services.

This positive step will help us move forward as we develop a new trading relationship with the EU.

Julian David, CEO of techUK, said:

Obtaining an EU-UK adequacy decision has been a top priority for techUK and the wider tech industry since the day after the 2016 referendum. The ruling that the UK data protection regime UK provides a level of protection equivalent to the EU’s GDPR is a vote of confidence in the UK’s high data protection standards and is of vital importance to UK-EU trade, because the free flow of data is essential for everyone. activity area.

The data adequacy decision also provides a basis for the UK and the EU to work together on global roads for the free flow of data with confidence, building on the G7 digital declaration. and technology and potentially unlocking € 2 trillion in growth.

The UK also now needs to complete the development of its own international data transfer regime to enable UK businesses not only to exchange data with the EU, but also to access opportunities across the globe.

Notes to editors

Read it European Commission press release

Read it GDPR decision

Read it Decision on the Law Enforcement Directive

Contact the DCMS press service on 020 7211 2210


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