European Interest

Privacy Symposium examines global role of data protection convention


The 2023 Privacy Symposium taking place in Venice from 17 to 21 April is devoting its opening day to a special programme on the Council of Europe’s privacy and data protection treaty (“Convention 108”), which comprises 55 states from four continents and has become the backbone of national legislation in many countries worldwide. Several sessions and workshops will address the future impact of the protocol modernising the treaty (Convention 108+) in achieving stronger data protection globally and an easier data flow among countries.

Argentina today became the 23rd state to ratify the protocol. In a ceremony during the opening of the special programme devoted to the treaty, the Director of the Agency of Access to Public Information of Argentina, Beatriz de Anchorena, deposited the ratification documents in the presence of Council of Europe Deputy Secretary General Bjørn Berge.

The sessions at the Privacy Symposium will take stock of progress made towards the entry into force of the protocol, which will happen when 38 states ratify it. In addition to the 23 states which have already ratified the protocol, another 21 states have signed it with a view to ratification.

Speakers at the opening session of the special Convention 108 programme included President of Slovenia Nataša Pirc Musar and Deputy Secretary General Bjørn Berge. The Privacy Symposium, hosted by the University of Ca’Foscari under the patronage of the Garante (Italian Data Protection Authority), will gather high-level representatives from government and international organisations, experts, academics and data protection authorities from all over the globe.

Speech by Deputy Secretary General Bjørn Berge

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