Nikolai Nikiforov

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Nikolai Nikiforov in 2012
recorded April 2013

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Nikolai Nikiforov (Russian: Никола́й Анато́льевич Ники́форов) (born 22 June 1982 in Kazan) is a Russian politician, currently serves as Minister of Communications and Mass Media of Russia.

Career[edit]

At age 19 he became deputy director of the Kazan Portal company. From 2006 to 2010 he headed the Center of Information Technology of Tatarstan. In 2010 Nikiforov became Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Information and Communication of Tatarstan Republic.

In 2011 Nikiforov defended thesis in Economics. According to examination made by Dissernet, this doctoral thesis contains minimum 97 pages with undocumented plagiarism from six other works.[1][2]

On May 21, 2012 he was named as the Minister of Communications and Mass Media in Dmitry Medvedev's Cabinet, thus becoming the youngest minister in Russia, aged 29.[3]

On October 2012 Nikiforov criticized Russia's leading telecom operation, Rostelecom for failing to address "digital inequality" in the country. Nikiforov singled out Rostelecom's investment strategy, which has primarily focused on expanding its market share by acquiring other companies, as inadequate. This, Nikiforov said, means the company's energies are focused on areas that are already connected to the internet, rather than acting to expand internet access.[4]

He pursued the modernization of the Russian Post, saying that modernization of the Russian Post will make it possible to deliver mail inside the country within a week. Nikiforov said the purpose of the Ministry of Communications is to ensure that all mail should be delivered within the boundaries of one large city of community within one day[5] and that he sees several instruments of financing the postal service’s upgrade program, such as the issue of infrastructure bonds, a rise in the prices of some services, the introduction of differentiated fees for the delivery of pensions (depending on the region) and the introduction of tax breaks.[6]

Nikiforov was responsible for the transition away from Apple iOS products towards Samsung Android products for use as government IT tools sometime between 2010 and March 2014, when it was first noticed by journalists at a cabinet meeting. He was quoted by AFP as saying "American special services … will significantly increase the volume of information they intercept (which) of course causes serious concern to many governmental clients. This obviously orientates Russian clients, primarily state ones, to be very choosy about their partners in IT."[7]

References[edit]