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Bucharest chosen over Brussels for new EU cybersecurity centre
Brussels has lost out to Bucharest in the vote to become the location for the new European Centre for Cybersecurity. The Romanian capital, which was favoured by EU diplomats in the second round of voting, will become home for the new centre from 2021.
The aim of the new European agency is to bring together all the major European players in cyber security. In this way, the EU hopes to better coordinate the fragmented landscape of cybersecurity products and services. The European Cybersecurity Competence Centre (ECCC) will initially receive €2.8 billion to establish itself and €2 billion for its development, which will be allocated from Horizon Europe and Digital Europe's resources for 2021-2028.
Brussels wanted the agency to be established in the Belgian capital and was vying for the centre along with six other cities. Munich, Warsaw, Vilnius, Luxembourg and León all dropped out in the first round of voting, with Bucharest being favoured over Brussels in the final vote.
Brussels minister-president Rudi Vervoort was disappointed. "This was a great opportunity to highlight several aspects of Brussels," he said. "Our file was well evaluated, including the connectivity and security of our future 5G network."
According to reports, Bucharest had an advantage over Brussels as it does not yet house a European agency. The fact that the centre in Brussels would be in the same city as all the other major European institutions was also not liked by many other countries. They feared that this would lead to more centralised powers and erode national influence over security issues.