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Europe wants to build its own quantum computer in five years

The EU wants to produce 1/5 of the world's advanced semiconductor production by the end of this decade and build its first quantum computer in five years as part of its efforts to reduce its dependence on non-European technologies.

According to Reuters, the EU plan, called 2030 Digital Compass, comes as the Covid-19 pandemic exposes the association to dependence on key technologies owned by Chinese and American companies.

The plan draws on the importance of semiconductors, used in interconnected cars, smartphones, Internet-connected devices in general, high-performance computers and artificial intelligence, as there is a worldwide shortage, leading to the closure of car factories around the world.

"It is our proposed level of ambition that by 2030 the production of semiconductors, sustainable and state-of-the-art technology in Europe, including processors, will be at least 20% of the value of world production," said an EU document seen by Reuters.

Commission Vice-President Margaret Vestager and Commissioner Thierry Breton will present the plan on Tuesday.

The EU plan recommends investing in quantum technology, saying it could be a "game changer" in developing new drugs and speeding up genome sequencing. "It is our proposed level of ambition that by 2025 we will have the first computer with quantum acceleration to pave the way for Europe to be at the forefront of quantum potential by 2030," the document said.

10,000 "climate-neutral" installations are also requested by 2030 to help Europe develop its own cloud infrastructure. It also aims to cover all European households with a Gigabit network by 2030, with all residential areas covered by 5G.