Moscow, April 24, 2015. — Extended board of Minsvyaz took place in press office of international information agency Russia Today. The meeting traditionally takes place in the middle of spring. More than 300 representatives of public authorities and heads of infocommunication industry took part in the meeting. Arkady Dvorkovich, Deputy Chairman of the Russian Federation, opened the meeting. Igor Shegolev, Assistant to the President of Russia, Sergey Zheleznyak, Deputy Chairman of the State Duma, Andrey Bystritsky, Chairman of the Public Council under Minsvyaz, Sergey Kalugin, President of OAO Rostelecom and Dmitry Strashnov, General Director of the FSUE Russian Post and Sergey Plugotarneko, General Director of Russian Association of Electronic Communications made speeches on the meeting. Nikolay Nikiforov presented summary report. Full text of his speech is presented below.
I want to thank you all for taking part in our meeting today. Representatives of the Administration of the President, Apparatus of the Government of the Russian Federation, the State Duma, members of the Federation Council, representatives of regions of Russia and other specialists, implementing public policy in spheres of telecom and IT are taking part in our meeting today. Cooperatively we are dealing with a huge amount of tasks. Our main goal is to improve quality of life and provide economic growth in spheres of telecom, postal services, IT, e-government services, media and a variety of different projects.
Let’s start with telecom industry. In 2014 we’ve worked on a number of strategically important projects: universal telecom services reform, mobile number portability and broadband access to the Internet. These efforts were objectively reflected in figures, facts and expert ratings, including international assessments. Penetration of broadband Internet access reached 58.3%. Report of the World Bank revealed significant progress of the Russian Federation in this period. Separate detailed report defines key achievements and strategic goals of the Russian Federation.
I’m proud to present Russia because we are among the leaders on a scale of implemented reforms today. Russia is the country with the largest territory and the most ambitious plans. We are conducting aggressive public policy today. Russia is among 24 countries of the world with the highest speed of Internet access, lowest prices of Internet access and one of the lowest prices on mobile communications.
In 2014 we’ve continued work on elimination of digital gap. Last year, on May 13, 2014 we’ve signed a ten-year contract in the same hall. This contract became the basis for universal telecom services reform. Today we are conducting the largest global telecom constructing project, connecting small inhabited localities to telecom services.
More than 215 thousand kilometers of fiber-optic communication bands will be constructed throughput Russia. They will cover small inhabited localities with population from 250 to 500 people. Constructing will also cover other small inhabited localities, lying on the route.
This reform will enable high-speed Internet access for 97% of population. 3% of population lives in small inhabited localities with population less than 250 people. It doesn’t mean that these territories will be not covered with Internet access. Our satellite program will provide telecom services in such inhabited localities.
There is one important social aspect. During meeting of the International Telecommunication Union in Doha, I promised global community to keep prices on Internet access lower than prices on a cup of coffee in Europe. We’ve argued with one of my European colleagues. This promise was fulfilled. The Government established base tariff for Internet access at the level of 45 rubles per month or 1.5 rubles per day for 10 Mbit.
Average actual costs will be higher, because people usually purchase package of services. Particularly, television and telephony services. I hope that these changes will not have a negative impact on business of Rostelecom.
Dear colleagues, let’s move to our plans for 2015. Our contract implies implementation of project in 11 regions of Russia. Works will begin in 62 regions of Russia. We’ve carried out a large-scale work on preparation and projecting in 2014. We are starting implementation of the project taking into consideration seasonal climate construction cycle.
Our extended board is a meeting, where we can openly discuss our problems. We are worried about the Financial Act, recently considered in the State Duma.
It can negatively affect universal telecom services fund. All citizens pay 1.2% from their telecom expenses to this fund. It’s not a tax levy. It’s a special purpose fund, established by the article of the Federal law “On communications”. We are gathering a huge amount of money in 2015 — 14.5 billion rubles. However, smaller amount of money will be spend on implementation of this reform. According to the Financial Act just 11.5 billion rubles will be provided for universal telecom services reform. Three billions will be used for other public needs. As a branch Ministry we are convinced that these resources should be used for special purpose. We’ve gathered 14.5 billion rubles required for implementation of this reform and we should implement our obligations before citizens of small inhabited localities.
We will be not able to carry out the largest global constructing project if funding is deprived. We expect that the State Duma and the economic bloc of the Government will support us. We hope to return these three billion of rubles during autumn amendments to the Financial Act. It’s critically important for implementation of the project.
This project will not just cover small inhabited localities with a broadband Internet access, it will also cover socially important objects. Such as schools, hospitals, postal offices, libraries and local authorities. Is it possible to manage the region, if municipal entities or rural councils don’t have reliable and stable communication services? It will be not possible to organize videoconference or to launch information and analytical systems.
I want to address our colleagues in regions of Russia. We ask you to support our project and our operator with additional and financially reliable demand for these services. This service is not free of charge. Corresponding local or regional budgets should pay for it.
We are laying a road. Maximum amount of cars should use this road.
I talk about our special projects on every meeting. They are of vital importance and the Ministry controls their implementation. We are a single country, however, there are still inhabited localities, where thousands of citizens don’t have any points of a high-speed data transmission.
Underwater optical communications through the Sea of Okhotsk: Sakhalin – Magadan and Sakhalin – Kamchatka is our largest project today. The contract was signed, the project is being implemented, certain infrastructural works have been already carried out and we expect that lying of cable will begin in July.
Separate project was developed for Norilsk. We are searching for an appropriate project solution now. The majority of problems are caused by natural factor. Climate and geological conditions are severe. Crossing of Enisey is also problematic. However, Norilsk Nickel, Rostelecom, other interests structures and local authorities are searching for an appropriate solution and financing for this project. Nearly 180 thousand of citizens are waiting for implementation of this project. And we will try our best to implement it.
Project on connection of Kurils is also facing financial problems. It will be implemented as soon as we will get required support and resources. This project is also critically important for our country.
In case all listed projects will be implemented, Chukotka will be the last not connected region. We have some ideas for this area. We will try our best to cover Anadyr with a high-speed Internet access. In this case all regions of Russia will be provided with telecom services.
Dear colleagues, let’s move to position of Russia in global telecom ratings. Russia is among ten top countries with the most available broadband Internet access according to the Network Readiness Index of the World Economic Forum. Russia takes 25th place according to availability of mobile services and 41st place according to development of information and communication services. Thus, we can see that Russia moved up by 9 positions compared to 2014. Russia takes the best position among BRICS-countries. 2015 is a year of BRICS under chairmanship of the Russian Federation and I think that this fact is also important.
Technological neutrality became an effective mechanism for eliminating digital gap. We were impressed with the popularity of this mechanism among telecom operators. Today technological neutrality is available in ranges of 450 MHz, 900 MHz and 1800 MHz. This principle is already implemented in 77 regions of Russia.
Number of LTE base stations is also constantly growing. There were 42 thousand base stations at the end of 2014. Their number increased fivefold starting from 12.4 thousand. There were just 2247 base stations in 2012. We will keep up rates of modern telecom technologies introduction.
If we consider feedback from citizens, we will see that LTE, high-speed Internet access and mobile Internet are demanded in almost every application.
Development of telecom infrastructure is impossible without cooperation between regulator and industry representatives. The industry requires reforms and changes in legislative framework that will help to optimize expenses and decrease costs. In this case we will be able to do more for the same money for our citizens. I want to mention new principle of payment for radio frequency spectrum, when operators pay for the territory, not for the number of base stations. Previously, the more base stations were constructed, the more paid the operators. We’ve changed this principle.
Mutual use of telecom infrastructure and frequencies are of great importance in current economic situation. Corresponding legislative acts were adopted and operators have already started to use them. We were surprised to see how fast the largest Federal operators signed decrees on mutual development of networks.
Corresponding rules on international legal protection of radio frequencies distribution were approved by the Governmental decree in order to protect interests of Telecommunication Administration of Russia at the international level. Professionals know importance of such work.
I want to mention few economic indicators. Telecom industry is the third industry according to the amount of delivered services. Housing and public utilities and transport services take first and second places respectively. Telecom industry delivers almost the same amount of services as transport industry.
However, revenue growth is shifting down. Total revenue of three largest Federal mobile operators shows that the market is already saturated. That’s why today we should focus on increasing of quality, efficiency and optimizing of costs that will help us to invest in development of infrastructure.
1.3 million subscribers have already used mobile number portability service. This service is highly demanded today. 2.5 thousand mobile numbers were transferred on an average per day in 2014. 3.5 thousand numbers are being transferred on an average per day in 2015. Existence of such service is much more important than the number of transferred mobile numbers, because it means strengthening of competition on the market. It’s an opportunity to “vote with the ruble”. Each subscriber has an opportunity to change operator without changing mobile number and, thus, choose better quality at lower costs.
We don’t plan any special activities for promotion of this service. We think that mobile number portability service has already proved its efficiency. Largest tenders also reveal this tendency. We will continue maintaining of competition in all industries that are under jurisdiction of Minsvyaz.
It’s necessary to decrease costs on constructing of telecom networks and shorten terms of placing them in commissioning. Terms are of great importance in this situation. The order of Minsvyaz, developed in 2014, simplifies launch of telecom networks. According to amendments, telecom objects are placing in commissioning via notification procedure. This measure will help to fasten development of telecom networks in remote regions of Russia.
The Governmental decree №1342 “On the order of telephone services delivery” established a number of important changes. Particularly, opportunity to change billing plan, number of delivered services and terms of agreement via personal users’ account or with the use of other mechanisms of electronic interaction. New rules oblige operators to inform subscribers 10 days before changes in tariffs. Previously, this sphere was not regulated. We’ve received a lot of applications from citizens concerning unfair work of operators in this sphere.
Minsvyaz pays special attention to development of satellite grouping. We’ve made a number of successful launches recently. It is planned to launch two more satellites. Significant increase of Russian satellites on geostationary orbit is an important task, assigned to Rossvyaz, the FSUE satellite Communications and Gazprom Space Systems. Satellite communications is a strategically important development direction. Development can be based on principles of effective investment approach. This means that satellite communications will be developed without budget financing, with the use of appropriate market tariffs and with sharing responsibilities between satellite producers and operators. These measures will help to increase efficiency of industry and to ensure against risks.
Russia takes 14th place according to the level of satellite communications development. Russia is a country, possessing space power and it should take better position. For example, Luxemburg takes first place in this rating.
The Russian Federation with its satellite development program should be among leaders in this industry. New version of the Federal satellite program is being discussed currently. Vostochny Cosmodrome is being constructed now. We will try our best to return Russia in the top five leaders according to the number of satellites on the orbit and amount of delivered services. This goal requires close international cooperation, mutual development of satellite positions, attraction of budget and loan financing and new principles of development and launch of satellites and guarantees of their work. It’s a complex and interesting work that we have to do.
Telecom industry contributes to development of other industries. In his speech Arkady Dvorkovich paid special attention to development of electronic services and e-government.
Plan of activities on implementation of “Concept on development of mechanisms for delivery of public services in electronic form” was approved in 2014. It’s necessary to make delivery of public services simple and convenient for every citizen. It should be as easy as to purchase a flight ticket. User can choose a ticket and pay for it online, such purchase doesn’t require any personal visits. Our goal is to decrease amount of personal visits, number of documents and amount of time, required for delivery of public services.
It sounds simple, but it’s not easy to focus on priority tasks. According to statistics, 80% of facts of services delivery are connected with just 35 public services. Particularly, 20 regional and local and 15 Federal public services. These services include real estate registration, topic, connected with social and tax aspects. All these services are listed in the concept.
We have already discussed exclusion of some non-standard public services from plan of transferring public services to electronic form. For example, licensing of space activities, including items to register of petroleum processing plants and cattle grazing on border areas. There are too many types of public services in our country.
Our goal is to change order of services delivery and to introduce amendments to the Federal laws concerning these 35 types of public services. Thus, 80% of our citizens will be provided with high-quality public services.
It’s obvious that regions have different legislative acts and procedures. We want to establish unified procedure and format for services delivery. Let’s consider, for example, such popular service as electronic queue to kindergartens. It’s a regional service provided in 83 regions of Russia. We need to finalize works on delivery of this service in two regions of Russia. Every region provides this service separately. We’ve created “Services concentrator” that will provide every citizen with an opportunity to interact with every region via one-stop shop principle. All 20 regional and local services should undergo this procedure.
Number of users, registered on the Unified Public Services Portal is constantly growing. Particularly, number of users of the Unified System of Identification and Authentication is growing. Their number increased almost twice in 2014. Our goal is to increase number of registered users up to 23 million people. In the first quarter their number increased from 13 to 15 million people. New users are being registered every six seconds. We should increase this rate and we all are responsible for achievement of key performance indicator, established by the Presidential order №601 from May 7, 2012. 70% of citizens should use public services in electronic form by 2018. It’s necessary to define separate plans for each territory, region and Federal district. We all are working for achievement of this important goal.
We’ve introduced simplified procedure of registration on the Unified Public Services Portal. It’s a very important step allowing citizens to register within just few seconds. It’s easy to register with the use of mobile number or e-mail. Citizens will be able to fill in all additional lines, undergo additional verification and identity confirmation in postal offices and office of OAO Rostelecom. More than 62% of registrations were confirmed. 9.2 million users underwent all procedures in order to receive full amount of public services. Simplified registration allows citizens to get limited number of public services. We need to continue work in this direction.
Amount of delivered services has also increased, but we think that it’s not enough. We need to implement additional measures aimed at improving efficiency of e-services delivery.
144 new services were launched. Quality is much more important than quantity. 35 verified public services will fully cover demands for e-government services.
I want to draw your attention to figures, based on a large-scale research, carried out by Rosstat. 52 thousand of citizens throughout Russia were interviewed. This data is published on the website of Rosstat. It is worthy to be carefully examined. We have already studied these figures with my colleagues from regions of Russia. 35.2% of public services users in Russia used various ways of public services delivery in electronic form.
I’m seriously worried about gap between leading regions and regions that are at the end of this rating. We need to strengthen our work in regions, where less than 35% of citizens are using e-government services. We need to implement a complex of measures aimed at solution of this problem. Promotion activities and information campaigns should be organized. Citizens should know about these opportunities.
We also work on development of System of Interdepartmental Electronic Cooperation (SIEC). Billion requests were registered in 2014. Growth rates reached 400%. New version SIEC 3.0 is being prepared for launch. We also have pilot regions. Our purpose is to avoid inoperability and reboot of the system. These measures will help to improve efficiency of interaction in electronic form. This means refusal from paper, increase of speed and transfer to “Concept on development of mechanisms for delivery of public services in electronic form”.
Project on improvement of custom administration is an example of a large-scale reform, based on electronic cooperation. SIEC helped to optimize work and collaboration on documents between 25 authorities. 7.5 million requests were registered in this system. It’s a technological basis for all administrative procedural reforms in our country.
Independent assessment of our work is really important. Ministry of Economic Development monitors quality of public services delivery. We can see positive dynamics — 40% of annual growth. It’s a good rate, but the base we are starting with is relatively low. Today our work can be evaluated at 2.5 grade and we should work at 5 grade. This topic was separately discussed on the meeting of subcommittee. We know leaders and outsiders. We should ensure constant and effective work in this direction. There are Federal public authorities and regional structures that don’t meet terms of transferring public services to electronic form. This sphere requires strict control and we should mobilize our efforts in this direction.
Some directions of our work should be mentioned separately. We are launching Independent registrar system. The Russian Federation is among countries with the highest level of electronic trade and procurement procedures. According to the Federal law №223 companies with public share make procurements for 17.7 trillion rubles, according to the Federal law №44 for six trillion rubles. The Federal law №223 is the most liberal. We often work cooperatively with law enforcement authorities in cases of fraud.
Fraudsters often manipulate facts. Independent registrar fully excludes such possibility. Even if efficiency of such purchases is increased by 0.5%, it will have enormous effect for economy and budget of our country. Work has already began, the system works. We expect that efficiency of these procedures will significantly grow in 2015.
Housing and public utilities services are also highly demanded. Separate Federal law was adopted. There are 50 million households in Russia and at least once in a month we receive tax invoice. It’s a list of provided services, sums paid and charged and tariffs. It seems to be a simple procedure, but it lacks order.
Our purpose at the Federal level is to guarantee every citizen an opportunity to get this data in electronic form, ensure its storage and provide opportunities for cooperation, also with management companies, in order to protect users’ rights.
It’s one of the most popular public services. GIS HPU is being implemented throughout Russia: regions are signing agreements and starting projects. We are working cooperatively with Ministry of Constructing and Housing and Public Utilities of Russia. We’ve also created a separate working group. It’s a large-scale Federal project.
Work of corresponding collegial bodies helps us to implement these initiatives. Dmitry Anatolievich Medvedev headed the Government Commission on Information Technologies. Four meetings took place during accounting period. We have corresponding Subcommittee on E-services under chairmanship of Minsvyaz. There were 14 meetings in form of videoconference. 80 topics were discussed and documents were examined. This work will be continued in 2015.
Let’s move to information systems and projects, connected with quality of public administration. It’s a legislative topic. All initiatives are being implemented cooperatively with legislators. Amendments to law on digital signature were adopted in the first reading. Role of digital signature in modern information society is constantly growing.
Let’s discuss measures, concerning demonpolisation. It’s a ban of restrictions on the use of digital signature. Many users complain that each case requires separate digital signature and separate expenditures. The law solves this problem. It considers use of digital signature on mobile devices and strengthens liability of certification authorities.
Minsvyaz also coordinates expenditures of other public authorities. It’s a large-scale work, especially taking into consideration constant decrease of budget financing. We consider imformatization plans of every Federal executive authority. We’ve examined 576 documents. 430 plans on 60 billion rubles were approved. Other plans on 138 billion rubles were returned for improvement. These figures show scale of implemented projects.
21 billion rubles were spend on ICT in Federal executive authorities in 2014. 12 billion rubles were used on improvement of public services delivery, 6.8 billion on improvement of public authorities activities and 2.3 on increasing of public authorities’ openness.
Operating costs are the main part of expenditures. They make nearly 70% of all expenditures and their optimization should be our priority. Project of unified data transmission network for public authorities is one of the measures, suggested for optimization of costs.
Starting from January 1, 2015 Federal executive authorities were provided with an opportunity to work in such unified data transmission network. Unification of public authorities demands will help to optimize costs and increase amount of delivered services. Some public authorities annually switch up to 10% of their objects without increasing contract costs.
Project on introduction of electronic passports is of great importance. Russian technologies, used in biometric passports of new generation with non-contact microchips will be used as a base. Nearly 400 thousand passports were issued. We should implement a full-scale reform and refuse from paper passports. It should be replaced with modern electronic document with corresponding protection and relevant electronic filling. Every citizen will be able to use full range of electronic resources. Minsvyaz and the Federal Migration Agency are developing this project.
Accounting period was marked by Olympiad, a year before we’ve carried out a World Universiade. Now we are preparing telecom infrastructure to FIFA World Cup that will take place in 2018. In 2015 we’ve approved corresponding concept and our further work will be based on it.
Taking into account limited budget resources our goal is to maximize use of all technologies, previously used in other activities and to ensure high quality and stability of telecom infrastructure during FIFA World Cup 2018.
We are working on creation of integrated information system within Eurasian Economic Union. This system will coordinate mutual external auctions of all members of the Union. Full-scale implementation of government processes is impossible without this system.
United economic area should be based on modern information technologies. Our Ministry, branch authorities and members of the union are uniting their efforts. This means control over handling of goods and transport vehicles through customs borders. It’s a cross-country SIEC with systems of electronic cooperation within each country.
Unified Personnel Management System is starting its work. A number of pilot public authorities will be connected to it. We continue implementation of the system. It can be considered a so-called internal intranet for Federal executive authorities. Civil service has a large scale in Russia. This work should be based on the latest technologies.
In his speech in the State Duma on the meeting of the Government Dmitry Medvedev defined priorities of the Government and told about assignment of additional financing to regions of Russia on finalizing programs on construction of kindergartens and schools. It’s important to know contingent of students in different educational establishments and be able to establish annual plans on various needs in order to provide effective management system. We should rely our work not on generalized standards, but on primary accounting data.
We’ve developed a corresponding concept. Work will be organized in form of integration project.
Electronic document flow is being actively developed. 70% of outgoing documents of Minsvyaz, including documents, delivered to the Apparatus of the Government, are being handed in electronic form. There are pilot Federal executive authorities and regions. All Federal executive authorities should ensure priority of these actions within their imformatization plans. It’s strange to hand documents to the Government in paper form today. Paper documents are needed for archives, but not for working operations. All operations should be carried out in electronic form. Electronic document flow fastens delivery of documents and implementation of tasks.
Let’s talk about regional imformatization. New concept on regional imformatization was approved on December 29, 2014. This concept contains a number of suggestions on development of regional imformatization. For our colleagues in regions it’s an opportunity to ask governors for additional resources. Due to complicated situation with regional budgets, information technologies are often neglected. I can’t agree with it. Information technologies should be the base for all reforms, aimed at increase of public administration efficiency.
Concept on regional imformatization should be the base for regional imformatization projects. We are annually subsidizing regions of Russia. 61 regions of Russia got 1 billion rubles in form of subsidies in February, 2014. One more stage was finalized recently. This work is especially important. These subsidies should be used for rising regional financing.
Let’s move to information technologies. Russia is a country, possessing a full range of information technologies. There are just few other similar countries. We work on improvement of environment for IT business in Russia. We’ve introduced lower insurance premiums for IT companies with the number of personnel starting from 7 people. The rate was decreased to 14.2%. We received 1800 new accreditation requests due to introduction of this measure. Nearly 4600 companies were accredited. In 2014 revenue of accredited companies exceeded 300 billion rubles, average salary of employees reached 84 thousand rubles per month. This rate is higher than the average salary in Russia. It’s a good point for balanced and knowledge-based growth of our economy.
We are holding a complicated discussion with socio-economic block of the Government. We think that we should preserve lower insurance premiums. Share of payments from payroll is at the maximum level. Economic growth and wage growth rates should be used for justification of these benefits preserving.
Cooperatively with our colleagues from Ministry of Education and Science we’ve managed to increase number of state-financed places on IT specialties. For the second year we are keeping this tendency. In 2014 there were just 25 thousand state-financed studying places, their number reached 43 thousand in 2015. Every year we will educate this number of specialists. Increase of state-financed studying places by 30% annually is an impressive result.
In 2014 we’ve carried out the largest educational action in IT sphere. 70% of pupils took part in “Hour of code”. Even children were able to take part in this action and to program behavior of virtual living creature in the maze. We plan to continue development of this action. We set IT companies a task to transfer “Hour of code” into a real virtual school, where technological leaders of IT industry could prepare online lessons in a remote mode.
More than 7.5 million pupils took part in this action. It’s an impressive figure and a great potential for growth of IT industry.
In 2014 we finalized constructing of technoparks in sphere of high technologies within corresponding Federal program. It was a complicated constructing. Every constructing project in Russia is an occurrence. Some technoparks have already turned out to be highly effective.
In 2014 revenue of technoparks exceeded 40 billion rubles, annual growth reached 30%. Total square of technoparks amounts 411 thousand meters. 775 companies and 19 thousand professionals are already operating. One third of technoparks area was placed into operation in December, 2014. Federal investments amounted 13 billion rubles, regional investments counted 17 billion rubles. It’s one of the most affective programs on creation of working places at the expense of budget resources.
Arkady Dvorkovich told about import substitution plans. Igor Shegolev defined role of Russia on the international stage as a party reconsidering approaches to development of information technologies.
Our position is simple. IT and software industries are monopolized by one country and few companies. It’s not surprising that European Commission initiates large-scale antimonopoly proceedings. Such proceedings are also initiated in Russia. Most countries of the world, including all BRICS-countries share this problem.
In 2015 I’ve made official visits to India, China, Brazil and carried out discussions with my colleagues from corresponding ministries. I plan to visit the Republic of South Africa recently. We want to make IT industry competitive and to avoid total bans. We don’t support sanctions, but we are going to support our developers.
Import substitution plan of Minsvyaz contains three units. First of all, we don’t need any direct financial support from the Government. There are industries, where companies managed to achieve success without any government support. System base software is a second unit of the plan. It requires collective development of software. Such work can’t be done by one country, even if it is a BRICS country. It requires collaboration between countries. Governments should provide grants to developers. We are against support of separate companies. Companies should establish their own community and make decisions on their own. It’s a so-called self-regulated organization. This self-regulated organization should be an international establishment. We plan to support development of mobile operating systems, database management systems and office applications.
This work has already begun. Minsvyaz supports delivery of Government grants on wages to Russian developers, who remain to work in their companies. They will devote some time to collective developments. Not only BRICS-countries want to take part in this project. I’m sure that it will be a large-scale international project with the guiding role of Russia. We encourage everyone to consider our import substitution plan and join to our dialogue.
Now I would like to talk about media industry. Nearly 83% of citizens have access to 10 television channels of first multiplex. 49% have access to television channels of second and third multiplex. It’s 20 channels totally. 60% of population has access to television channels of high definition. It became a branch standard and essential requirement of our citizens.
We also increase share of educational programs for children and youth. Separate television channel for children was launched in June, 2014.
14 thousand hours of television channels were provided with latent subtitling. We will continue implementation of these key initiatives.
Internet is not just a tool for finding information, it’s a large sector of our economy. 1.2 million working places were created with involvement of Internet industry. 100 thousand additional working places were created in 2014. Amount of Internet-dependent industries is 6.7 trillion rubles. 1.6% of Russian GDP — trillion rubles is a volume of markets directly connected with Internet and electronic payments.
Let’s discuss results of legislative initiatives, aimed at combating Internet piracy. Number of legal content buyers increased by 4 million people. Our goal is to increase this number up to 30 million people by 2018.
Refusal from Federal subsidies on delivery of printed media was widely discussed. I want to thank publishing industry and postal sector for close cooperation. We’ve created separate Expert Council on Regional Media. We’ve maintained delivery tariffs at the level of 2014, decreased threshold circulation, required for price reduction and stopped decrease of circulations in the first half of 2015.
I want to announce one of the projects in IT sphere — online subscription agency. Previously, Russian Post had a number of intermediaries, publishers didn’t work directly with Russian Post. Starting from the next subscription campaign Russian Post is launching business-to-business online tool enabling every publisher to deal directly with post. It will be possible directly define where and what will be delivered, make a contract, see direct transparent tariffs and make all operations in automated electronic mode. Fair rules will help to support printed media market.
We pay special attention to distribution of printed media. A number of regions don’t meet standard of one kiosk per 1500 citizens. But I want to thank leading regions, fulfilling and even exceeding this standard.
There is a separate indicator in our information society media literacy program. Media literacy is an ability to use search systems, ability to distinguish reliable information from incorrect information and use tools of parent control. Media literacy reached 20% — it’s a 5% growth compared to previous year. We should increase this index.
Dear colleagues, let’s move to postal sector. We are implementing reforms in this sector now. Development strategy of the FSUE Russian Post and development strategy of postal industry were approved. The Federal law “On postal communications” was passed in the first reading. We are looking forward to second reading of this law.
Objective indicators reveal more than legislative acts. Amount of international parcels increased twofold. This direction of postal communications was previously almost underdeveloped. For a few days we didn’t handle international parcels and they were stored in largest international airports.
Let’s move to core idea of postal reforms. New order, replacing paper units with electronic ones was approved. These amendments will be introduced to the Federal law and will ensure balanced and convenient transfer from paper to electronic form.
Financial indicators are also important. Revenue growth of 5% allowed raising salary by 11%. Russian Post as the second largest employer in Russia is priority to heads of the enterprise. Average salary amounted 18.6 thousand rubles. Some costs are being optimized. This money will be spend on increase of salaries.
Revenue of the enterprise reached 1.235 billion rubles — it’s a good rate. The enterprise should be profitable. This revenue should be used on modernization and improvement of its infrastructure.
Aspects of international collaboration are also important. First of all, I would like to tell about the International Telecommunication Union (ITU). The 150th anniversary of ITU, World Radiocommuncation Conference and some other activities will be organized in 2015.
Minsvyaz is a co-chairman in Slovenian, Laotian and Cambodian Intergovernmental Commissions. There is also Intergovernmental Commission with Australia. However, normal operation with this country was not initiated. We are open for cooperation and we are ready to develop relations with Australian colleagues.
Cooperation with BRICS-countries is one of our priorities. We hope that separate meeting of BRICS ministers of information technologies will be organized in 2015. We plan to organize this meeting in Moscow. There will be separate meetings of telecom ministers and media regulators. This decision will be taken on the BRICS meeting in Ufa.
There is no doubt that BRICS-countries should coordinate their efforts. It’s a half of global population. It’s a strong power for influencing ICT processes.
Annexation of Crimea and its affiliation to Russia according to results of national referendum was a challenge to telecom, postal and many other industries, subordinated to the Ministry.
I want to thank my colleagues for their strong position. Our Ministry was the first civil Ministry to enter Crimea on March 20, 2014. We also visited Crimea on March 20, 2015. It was an important day for us. In short terms we’ve constructed underwater fiber-optic cable, allocated corresponding numbering codes, improved work of digital multiplexes and radio frequency spectrum, carried out subscription campaign, allocated new postal indexes, accredited IT companies for delivery of benefits. We’ve carried out a huge amount of work.
We also defined perspective area for construction of technoparks in Crimea. We haven’t solved problem of financing yet. It’s a very important task.
We should work on construction of technoparks in Crimea and Sevastopol. This project requires corresponding support from the Federal budget. IT industry in Crimea also requires our support.
There are certain direct investments from the Federal budget on development of telecom infrastructure in Crimea. More than 450 million rubles were delivered on modernization of postal infrastructure: 250 cars and new computer equipment. During the last 20 years many of Crimean industries were not modernized.
We should cover Crimea with 3G and 4G. These networks are already starting to operate in some areas of Crimea. We hope that telecom operators will provide high-quality telecom services by May, 9. High-speed telecom services should be provided at least in places of parades organization. New base stations will be also created. Crimea should be fully covered with modern telecom services by new touristic season.
Dear colleagues, concluding my speech, I want to define priority gals of Minsvyaz. They all are listed on our website. Today we can say that some of them were achieved:
- Broadband access — 60% from 80%;
- Share of citizens, using e-government services — 35% from 70%;
- All technoparks were placed in commissioning;
- IT industry growth rates exceed GDP growth rates;
- 49% from 95% of citizens have access to 20 television channels in digital quality;
- Certain terms of postal items delivery were established.
There is still a lot of work to do in this sphere. According to statistics, presented by Roskomnadzor, postal sector has already achieved significant results. Russian Post will be fully modernized, including its visual representation. 42 thousand offices of Russian Post will become modern and citizens will have only positive emotions while visiting them. Such improvements require more personnel, increase of salaries and investments to new infrastructure.
Dear colleagues, thank you for attention!
We are looking forward to interesting and intensive work.
I want to thank our partners, legislators, heads, colleagues from regions of Russia and all interested organizations for taking part in initiatives of Minsvyaz and cooperative work.
We work for improvement of life quality and maintenance of economic growth. Thee are main objectives of the Government and our Ministry.
We are always in touch and we are always looking forward!
Thank you all!