The world economy is moving from a predominantly industrial society to a new Information Society, and is becoming ever more information-based. It is, therefore, crucial for competitiveness and success in business to improve the systems used to access and distribute information and the technologies that drive them.
Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) applications, such as electronic Invoicing, car navigation or flight booking systems are also radically changing the way companies and governments work or individuals enjoy their leisure time. The promise of the new technologies is real. However, ICT applications will not reach their full potential unless they and their supporting infrastructures are fully interoperable. This is the role of standards.