Russians are promised free internet and prosperity of Yandex

Publication date: 16 Jan 2020

In a January 15 address to Russia’s parliament, Russian president Vladimir Putin proposed a number of initiatives and told about the upcoming changes. But then something unexpected happened: the entire Russian government resigned.

Let’s talk about the first consequences…

Access to Russia’s “socially significant” websites will be absolutely free

On 15 January, Russian president Vladimir Putin in his address to the parliament announced the launch of the “Accessible Internet” project. Russians will be provided with free access to websites with “socially significant” information.

“Russia is one of the few countries in the world to have its own social networks, messengers, email and search systems, and other national online resources. I suggest the “Affordable Internet” project. People won’t have to pay for the telecom service itself; for the internet traffic,” Putin said. 

What websites will be listed as “socially significant” still remains unknown. The president expressed hope that the project will become a competitive advantage of Russia. High accessibility of the internet will also provide a wide space for education, creative work, communication, and implementation of social and cultural projects.

Yandex shares at record highs

On 16 January, Yandex shares grew by 6.7% to a record high of 2869.2 RUB after Mikhail Mishustin, the new prime minister of Russia, called on the country to prioritize the development of the digital economy. In particular, he expressed readiness to support Yandex.

The previous record high of 2682 RUB per share was reached on 27 November 2019. The price then grew after the president signed a law on registration of international funds, which allowed Yandex to register its new “public interest foundation” corporate structure.

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