The number of personal computers sold in Russia in the second quarter of 2003 increased by 27% compared to the same period in 2002, said Communications Minister Leonid Reiman in an Internet press conference on October 13. He added that the number of personal computers sold in Russia over the past three years increased by 150% and reached 13 million.
Reiman said that the information technology industry is growing at an accelerated rate. He said that the number of Internet users increased by 39% in the last year and reached 12 million. 'The quantity of Russian language information resources is also growing steadily. Because the Russian market for information technology is 'far from being saturated,' over the past two years the domestic market for information technology has grown at a faster pace than similar foreign markets. In 2002, growth in the Russian information technology market averaged 9% and reached USD 4.2 billion, said Reiman. Moreover, the total amount of Russian software produced was valued at USD 450 million with plans to further increase production to USD one billion per year.
'The regular growth in demand for information services by citizens and the government is a truly positive dynamic in the development of information technology,' said Reiman. He said that the massive federal program Electronic Russia is continuing, which will allow for the increase in the effectiveness of work of the government apparatus and also for the development of many social projects.
Representatives of the Israeli Defence Ministry responded to recent reports about the possible delivery of S-300 SAM systems from Russia to Syria. Israeli Defence Minister Avigdor Lieberman said that Israel would destroy those systems
Russia is to start supplying S-300 air defence systems to Syria in the near future. The shipments will be conducted free of charge