“Monaco's main digital foundations have now been laid". Frédéric Genta is the Inter-ministry Delegate in charge of the digital transition in Monaco. His responsibility is to perpetuate the Monegasque model and adapt it to a changing world. He is making digital technology a tool for Monaco’s attractiveness.
Monaco’s digital transformation is speeding up. How’s it going?
Frédéric Genta: The Monegasque economy’s shift to digital has two aims: to develop the economy and government revenues, and to offer residents a better quality of life, this being a driver of the principality’s attractiveness. Over the past three years, the growth of the digital economy has created jobs in the banking sector, which now represents almost 2,000 jobs in Monaco and more than 800 million euros in revenue. The trend has been further accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic. The Extended Monaco digital transformation program adds to the country’s attractiveness in several ways. Many procedures, such as obtaining a residence card or applying for government housing, can be carried out online with a digital identity or a digital signature. Services to the population and individuals’relations with the government have been largely digitized. Education is another strong area. Last year, Monaco won a European coding competition: this encourages the younger generation to get involved in digital technology. And school textbooks are now almost entirely digitized. The main foundations have now been laid, in terms of the economy and of attractiveness.
Including in the banking sector?
F.G: Of course. Our country’s digitization makes us more attractive to new residents, multiplies the opportunities for them to open accounts in the Principality and gives us more assets under management. Banks are starting to make changes that will alter their relations with clients, employees, investment and compliance. The banks will also be central players in the new economy by enabling the financing of technological growth.
Is the Sovereign Cloud a factor for Monaco’s attractiveness?
F.G: Yes. We are currently in discussions with around 30 potential clients. Given that the structure of the Cloud was finalized in January, and that it takes about three months for a client to migrate, we are finalizing the first test phases with several clients as well as with the government. We aim to have 30 to 50 cloud customers by the end of the year. They will enjoy all the essential services such as digital signature and digital safe.
The Blue Fund aims to boost Monaco’s economy through digital technology. Is it a success?
F.G: It is working very well. More than 400 companies have benefited from it, with more than 13 million euros invested by the government and 300 jobs created. When the government invests €1 of blue money, it brings back €8, either in the form of additional business or by deducting expenses. Today, the value obtained is close to 100 million euros for our country’s economy, mainly for traditional companies in real estate, finance, manufacturing, services, tourism and events. It’s a virtuous cycle: these types of company are helped in their digital development by expert Monegasque companies, thanks to public money. Banks account for 15% of applications for blue money; we are very happy about that.