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Russia and China Expand Trade in Computer Software

Published: August 19, 2014 (Issue # 1824)



  • Communications and Mass Media Minister Nikolai Nikiforov.
    Photo: Andrei Makhonin / Vedomosti

As Russia's relations with the West sour over Ukraine, the Kremlin has agreed to broaden software deliveries to China, with increased supplies of Chinese servers, storage systems and other IT products set to come the other way, Russian Communications and Mass Media Minister Nikolai Nikiforov said Monday.

The deal is likely aimed at helping Russia replace deliveries of U.S. information technology products in light of Western sanctions imposed on Moscow for its role in the Ukraine crisis.

Following his meeting in Beijing with Chinese Industry and IT Minister Miao Wei and the head of China's media administration, Cai Fuchao, Nikiforov also wrote on his Twitter account that the two countries have called for "a multilateral transparent model for managing crucial Internet resources," in an apparent sign that Russia and China may collaborate on cyber surveillance in future.

The move also comes a year after NSA leaker Edward Snowden revealed the scale of U.S. intelligence gathering, which served as a wake-up call in Russia on the security hazards of using Western computer software.

Any forthcoming bilateral agreements on security could play into the hands of Russian developers such as anti-virus software maker Kaspersky Lab, which is expanding into Asian markets, but was this month dropped from Beijing's list of approved online security vendors, according to a report by the People's Daily newspaper in China.

Chinese lawmakers have recently taken a hard line against foreign IT companies amid security fears. In July, Beijing opened an anti-monopoly inquiry into the practices of Microsoft and in May banned the use of Windows 8 operating system on all new government computers, AFP reported. China's leadership has also put pressure on the country's banks to get rid of IBM servers, Bloomberg reported in May.





 


ALL ABOUT TOWN

Thursday, Oct. 2


The celebration of the bicentennial of the birth of Mikhail Lermontov continues with today’s free exhibition in the city’s Lermontov Library at 19 Liteiny Prospekt. Titled “Under the Rustling Wings,” the temporary exhibition will feature the costumes and scenery used in the 1917 production of Lermontov’s play “The Masquerade,” which he wrote in 1835 when he was only 21 years old.



Friday, Oct. 3


Learn more about how to manage and evaluate employee performance during SPIBA’s Human Resources Committee meeting this morning on “Employee Assessment: Global and Local Trends.” Starting at 9:30 a.m., the discussion will touch on such topics as the partnership between HR and business, reliable assessment strategies and more, with Tatiana Andrianova, the head of the SHL Russia and CIS branch in St. Petersburg, as the featured guest. Confirm your participation by Oct. 2 by emailing office@spiba.ru or calling 325 9091.


AmCham’s Procurement Committee Meeting is at 9 a.m. this morning in their office in the New St. Isaac Office Center on Ulitsa Yakubovicha.



Saturday, Oct. 4


Wine and cheese lovers will get their chance to revel during Scandinavia Country Club and Spa’s Wine Market Weekend. Going on today and tomorrow, wining diners can listen to live music, take part in culinary classes and, of course, sample a variety of fine wines from around the world. The cost of admission is 400 rubles ($10.30) for adults and 200 rubles ($5.15) for children.



Sunday, Oct. 5


Look for the latest fall fashions at the Autumn Market today in Freedom Anticafe at 7 Kazanskaya Ulitsa. The minimarket plans to offer clothes more flattering than the puffy jackets that are a staple of the city’s cold-weather fashion, while offering the same amount of protection from the biting winds blowing off of the Baltic.



Monday, Oct. 6


SKA St. Petersburg, the city’s KHL affiliate, welcomes Slovakian club HC Slovan in a match-up tonight at the Ice Palace near the Prospekt Bolshevikov metro station. The puck drops at 7:30 p.m. and tickets can be purchased on the club’s website or in person at either the arena’s box office or the club’s merchandise store on Nevsky Prospekt.



Tuesday, Oct. 7


Learn more about Russia’s energy industry at the St. Petersburg Energy Forum that begins today and runs through Oct. 10. Attracting industry experts and political and business representatives, the forum plans to welcome more than 350 plus companies and their representatives to discuss the future of Russia’s largest economic sector.



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