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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

Sunday, Jan. 25


Get out your running shoes for the 46th International Road of Life Marathon. Dedicated to the end of the blockade, three runs are offered — 5, 21 and 42 kilometer runs — starting in different places outside the city. Busses leave from 13/1 Arsenalnaya Naberezhny at 8 a.m. but check complete details and registration fees on www.newrunners.ru/race/doroga-zhizni-2015



If you are planning a wedding, head over to the Azimut Hotel, 43/1 Lermontovsky Prospekt from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. The day includes live music, free dance classes and vendors selling wedding dresses, accessories, cakes and services to help make your special day perfect. Admission is free.



Monday, Jan. 26


Feeling stressed by the crisis? The Northwest Coach University at 3 Ulitsa Vostsstanaya is hosting a master class by lifecoach Tatiana Almazova. She will shed light on the coaching process, the usefulness of coaching during times of economic downturn and how coaching can improve your career and business prospects. The event starts at 7 p.m. and admission is free. Pre-register by calling 424 3700.



Discover the State Hermitage Museum's collection of English painting at a lecture by art historian Yelizaveta Renne at the Prince Galitzine Library, 46 Nab. Reki Fontanki. The event starts at 6 p.m. and the lecture will be followed by a concert of arias, songs and duets by English composer Henry Purcell. The event is free of charge.



Tuesday, Jan. 27


Celebrate the 71st anniversary of the end of the Siege of Leningrad on Palace Square with a free concert at 7 p.m. Listen to WWII-era songs and the poetry of Olga Bergholz while you peruse outdoor exhibitions dedicated to life during wartime. The event is capped off by a fireworks display at 9 p.m.



Stop by the Lexica School of Foreign Languages at 73 Ligovsky Prospekt from now until Friday for a free English lesson. The classes start at 7 p.m. and cover all levels, from Beginner to Advanced. Registration by telephone on 7641692 and a desire to improve your skills are the only prerequisites.







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