''We want to develop digital services but create a law that can become a drag''

IT and telecom experts tell about problems of digital economy and revolution due to technological leap

How does Tatarstan Telecom business react to changes of the legislation in the field of information technology? What consequences for the market and society will be due to development of the digital economy? How many people will be left behind and whether revolution will follow this? What fields will the digitalization affect the most, what will remain unchanged? The participants of the round table discussion ''New opportunities in the era of digital transformation'' tried to give answers to these difficult questions.

''Operators' expenditures will be transferred to customers, which is wrong''

The expert panel, organized by ComNews group of companies, gathered on its platform representatives of Tatarstan telecom and IT business as well as city authorities. The participants discussed quite complicated relationship of the digital economy and telecommunications business.

In the first place it should be noted that the digitalization of our country is accompanied by serious changes in the legislative framework, and one of the perfect examples here would be the adoption of the Yarovaya package, to which the participants of the meeting paid special attention, which is reasonable as it provides quite many unpleasant moments for telecom business.

''The Yarovaya package imposes on telecom operators rather strict requirements regarding storage of large amounts of information. This implies large expenditures, which probably somehow will be transferred to customers, which is wrong — we don't want to do that,'' lamented director for marketing of the company Tattelekom Alexander Smirnov.

''Expenditures for the Yarovaya package will probably somehow be transferred to customers, which is wrong — we don't want to do that,'' laments Alexander Smirnov. Photo: Maksim Platonov

According to the law, operators will be required to keep data for six months, however, a more realistic option, in the opinion of the representative of the company OBIT, is a period of three days. Deputy head of IT and communication department of Executive Committee of Kazan Dmitry Kremlev also spoke about the package from a negative position, ''On the one hand, we want to develop digital services and create the most convenient information environment but we make the law that may become an impediment and suspend many of the actions of communication agencies.''

According to the founder of the company Miras, Ramil Minnizyanov, the change of the legal framework in this area gives a boost for business, ''The movement has begun along with adoption of electronic document management. Then business began to gradually ''pushed'' and enter this area, but the maturity level is low for today. Adoption of any law in this area allows the business to penetrate and absorb, but for now the businesses insufficiently understand all the possibilities and advantages.'' Director for marketing and advertising in BARS Group Elvira Gilmanova holds a similar view. She believes that without changes to normative legal acts the ''digital economy'' in Russia ''will not soar''.

Technologies vs human being

What are the areas where digital technologies will be implemented in the first place? Based on the answers formulated by experts at the round table discussion, the digitization process will first affect the healthcare, education and agriculture, as well as fields related to conveniences (recreation, transportation). This list also includes banks and jurisprudence. By the way, in this context, Sberbank comes to mind — it intends to lay off about 3,000 employees and replace them with automatic algorithms, which will deal with legal issues.

According to the law, operators will be required to keep data for six months. Photo: securitylab.ru

The participants also tried to call the areas where human beings will not be replaced with technology — it turned out that they are not so many. For example, deputy head of communications and IT department of the Executive Committee of Kazan Anton Turaev believes, ''Everything that is connected with creativity and art will remain ''human''. The speaker also called the education field but specified that meant the education of children ''from one year to the moment when they can learn themselves''.

Experts agree that a sudden technological leap in the process of digitalization can lead to a social explosion because many professions will disappear, and part of the specialists will just not have time to adapt to changes because of their age.

''If to speak about systems of distributed registries, smart contracts, then it is part of the digital economy, which will probably allow to throw a large number of people out of the process. Vivid examples that are being mentioned: notaries, lawyers, banking sphere will be simplified, but this is only the tip of the iceberg. Gradually any decision on any issue must become a smart contract. If the digital economy will go in this direction, the question of the revolution will arise very sharply. The introduction of literally a dozen of smart contracts can help the market to get rid of the share of 10% of the population. This is a very bad trend, and these mechanisms are already being tested. The question to the government — how it will work out the regulation, how quickly it will open the abyss and how it will protect the population,'' says Anton Turaev.

''People who are really decision makers in the city will remain a little''

However, not all of them shared the concerns of the representative of the Executive Committee. For example, the head of the department for comprehensive inspections of Tatintek PLC Salavat Akhmetzyanov believes that no revolution is expected, and the market will develop ''exclusively from the point of view of economic expediency.''

According to Ramil Minnizyanov, the change of the legal framework in this area gives a boost for business. Photo: vk.com

The representative of the Executive Committee also voiced his vision for the state and municipal management in Russia in 10 years. According to him, almost entire state sphere within one city will consist of three to ten ''tops'' and a huge information system that takes almost all decisions. Besides, there will remain the service staff: analysts, programmers and developers.

''People who are really decision makers in the city will remain a little. If the digital economy will soar, then it is the first change that has to happen because what is done within the executive branch is decision making according to clear regulations. The only problem now is that there is no transparent platform and no necessary amount of IT specialists who would be engaged in government,'' summed up Turaev.

By Lina Sarimova