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Danilo Savić, CEO, Data Cloud Technology

Keeping Pace With the Best

The Government Data Centre in Kragujevac satisfies the highest levels of reliability, security and efficiency in the protection of equipment and data, as evidenced by the prestigious EN50600 class 4 certificate that is issued by German company TÜVIT. This is both great recognition and the best recommendation

The Republic of Serbia has spent the past few years investing significant funds in digitalisation, ICT sector development and the construction of science and technology parks, while the construction of an innovation district in Kragujevac will begin next year and will create optimal conditions for the development of new business ideas and start-ups.

Serbia has positioned itself among the top 10 countries worldwide and the top five in Europe when it comes to achieving the most progress on the digitalisation of public administration. What proved decisive in achieving this progress? Does your Centre also deserve some of the credit?

— The commitment and dedicated work of a large team, mostly comprising young engineers, has been decisive in achieving progress.

It is also important to emphasise that the importance, advantages and benefits of digitalisation were recognised on time in Serbia, which you will admit is not usual for us. We realised that data is among the most important resources in these times in which we live and we thus handle this resource in an appropriate way. We are keeping pace with the best, and we were on time in entering that race. The credit that the Government Data Centre deserves for the results achieved are primarily reflected in the infrastructure aspect of support for digitalisation. We guarantee the highest level of security, as well as easy and swift access to data.

Ever more digital services are easing the lives of citizens, because they are no longer required to visit the counters of institutions and thus waste their own time. Is their data safe and protected?

— Before answering this question, I would like to note that the effect of digital services is reflected in the fact that the number of visits by citizens to counters over the last couple of years has reduced by several million less than would have been the case without these services. The data is safe and protected, a guarantee of which is provided by certification of the highest recognised security standards of the Government Data Centre. There is no improvisation and checks are rigorous. The certification process is long and complex, and when you comply with all requirements of the standards and prove that you operate in accordance with them, it is clear that you provide the strongest possible guarantees that the data is safe and protected.

The capacities of the Government Data Centre are much higher than other centres around the region, and the technologies applied are the most modern in this part of Europe. What does that actually mean?

— Apart from the fact that it applies the most modern technologies, all segments of the Centre are rendered redundant sectors. In practical terms, this means that all Data Centre systems can ensure the smooth operation of ICT equipment in the case of unforeseen circumstances.

The maximum downtime on an annual basis practically cannot and must not exceed 18 minutes, i.e., the level of safety is 99.995%. Monitoring of all these systems is carried out 24x7x365, with the Operations Centre working continuously, tracking all applied technologies and reacting as and when required.

You were recently certified by German company TÜVIT, which confirmed that you satisfy the highest level of reliability, security and efficiency in the protection of equipment and data. Is this the biggest and best possible recommendation?

— The Government Data Centre in Kragujevac is one of only eight centres in Europe that hold the EN50600 class 4 certificate (the highest class of data centre). Moreover, according to this criterion, we are the only such centre in Southeast Europe.

It is perhaps illustrative to compare this data with sporting results in any discipline, where some of our competitors or teams are ranked in the top eight on the continent. The fact that Germany’s TÜVIT awarded us a certificate following complex analyses and verification seems to have given our success added weight in the eyes of the public.

The government data centre in Kragujevac is one of only eight centres in Europe that hold the EN50600 class 4 certificate, signifying the highest class of data centre

The essential fact is that the Data Centre truly operates in accordance with the requirements of this standard, and it therefore doesn’t matter who conducts the verification and certification. I don’t know what could be a better recommendation than being among the top eight in Europe.

Late October saw you announce the construction of an innovation district that will form part of the complex of the Data Centre in Kragujevac. Will the foundations of that new building also represent the foundations of the further development of digitalisation in Serbia?

— The Republic of Serbia has spent the past few years investing significant funds in the development of infrastructure capacities with the building of science and technology parks. The launch of the construction of the Innovation District in Kragujevac is planned for the first months of next year and, when completed, it will consist of a science and technology park and accompanying infrastructure units. This will create optimal conditions for the development of new business ideas and start-ups.

Digitalisation is an inevitable requirement of the times in which we live, and solid foundations to develop it have already been laid in Serbia. The Innovation District represents the next step, the implementation of new visions and our aspirations to be part of the developed world in this area, and for the ICT sector to thus contribute further to Serbia’s development.

A lot has been invested over many years in advancing digitalisation, developing the ICT sector and introducing the most modern technologies, including AI… Do we have enough experts for all that? There seem to be ever fewer of them opting to leave the country…

— What I can say with certainty is that the development of the ICT sector creates major new prospects, that there are other cities in Serbia (apart from Belgrade and Novi Sad) where there are ever more good companies and young experts in this field who can make a decent living from their work, and that gladdens me. The education system is also being transformed in this direction, particularly at the level of universities. Time will tell whether this transformation is fast enough and of a sufficiently high quality. The market has a need for experts and we have talented and diligent children. All we need is an intelligent strategy for the education system and there won’t be any problem.

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