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Putin agrees with idea of preferences for Russian Internet business

December 22, 2015, 16:49 UTC+3
The president called to introduce preferences without violating the commitments within the WTO framework
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© Alexei Nikolskiy/Presidential press service/TASS

MOSCOW, December 22. /TASS/. Russian President Vladimir Putin agrees with the idea of creating preferences for the Russian Internet business. "Yes, we agree [with such proposals]; we are ready and will think of that. We will do that," the President said on Tuesday at the Internet Economy Forum.

"However, this will be certainly done in a way not violating our commitments within the WTO framework. I am sure the appropriate correct decisions definitely can and must be found," Putin said.

"I cannot but agree with those who say pointing to decisions taken by us in the real sector of the economy, industry and agriculture: we provide certain benefits for Russian market participants, for national producers - why not do the same here [in Internet business sphere]," the President said.

The president noted activities of the Internet Initiatives Development Fund managing 6 billion rubles ($84.4 mln). Over 170 projects were added to the portfolio of the fund, Putin said.

"Certainly, the development strategy of the Russian Internet segment should be developed on the long-term basis, for the long term prospects," the President added. "Common development trends of the global network should be addressed," Putin said.

Putin said he believes that the Internet can become a driver for the development of the country.

The head of state also promised full support to the online community.

"The significance and impact of the Internet is constantly growing, it is necessary to use the Internet as a whole as a driver of development, modernization of the country," - Putin said.

According to him, "no one doubts this."

"We do want to help you and to support you in your efforts," - the president told the participants of the forum.

The official said that "in recent years the Internet firmly entered into everyday business life of the country, became an independent branch almost all over the world."

"Of course, Russia is not lagging behind and does not remain aloof from global trends: the Russian Internet audience is the largest in Europe and exceeds 80 million users, of which 62 million go online every day," Putin said.

According to him, people look to their phones 300 times a day to reach the global network and "find out what is going on in the world."

"Commercial segment of the network is rapidly growing, the volume of the market connected to the Internet accounts for 16% of GDP," - Putin said.

He said he is also pleased that a growing number of those who receives state and municipal services via the Internet.

"Last year, more than one third of the state and municipal services were provided in an computerized mode," - said the president.

Putin also suggested that participants of the forum should lay down their ideas and proposals and pass them to his aide Igor Shchegolev.

"All that you are agreed on what you formulated for the required joint work, for promotion of your initiatives, we are ready to pass into the hands of one of your colleagues, whom I invited to work in the administration of President (Herman Klimenko) and Igor Shchegolev so they together can promote your proposals on the site of the presidential administration and, of course, last but not least - within the executive branch of government and in the regions of the Russian Federation," - the head of state said.

Earlier on Tuesday, Putin proposed the Chairman of the Institute of the Internet Herman Klimenko to become his advisor on the development of the Internet.

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