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The further development of the Russian communications infrastructure cannot continue without state participation
The further development of the Russian communications infrastructure cannot continue without state participation, Information Technology and Communications Minister Leonid Reiman said Wednesday at a meeting on forming and developing a common information space between Russia and the CIS countries at The St. Petersburg International Economic Forum. Reiman said in order to develop the telecommunications infrastructure, the ministry would have to carry out the program presented to the government in April of this year. Reiman said he hoped the president's cabinet would approve the program in the near future. He said the resources necessary for developing the infrastructure are inaccessible for commercial use even though the infrastructure is managed directly by the state and needs to be substantially modernized and renewed. "In order to preserve the growth rate in this industry, we have to remove the existing barriers that hamper the introduction of new methods of regulating and stimulating the industry," Reiman said. Reiman named the acute lack of the radio-frequency spectrum, necessary for the introduction of new technologies, as one of the main problems. He said more than 90% of the radio-frequency spectrum has been reserved for the military and for special needs, while in industrial countries the same figure is about 30%. He also spoke in favor of converting the radio-frequency spectrum to help expand the use of new technologies in the communications sector, saying it would raise the economic efficiency of infrastructure development and would quickly recoup through the operators' payments for the use of the radio frequencies offered to the market. "The solution of the problem of converting the radio-frequency spectrum creates possibilities for the appearance of new telecommunications companies and stimulates the flow of investments into the industry," Reiman said. He also spoke about the necessity of switching to digital television and radio broadcasting in Russia, which would make it possible to increase the number of the received programs in any region of the country 4 to 6 times without attracting an additional frequency resource. Reiman also stressed the importance of modernization
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