$11 billion to be poured in Moscow e-city development program

The Moscow city government has signaled its preliminary approval for a five year city informatization program on Tuesday. The draft proposal of the program concludes that the whole initiative would cost 329.5 billion rubles, about $11 billion, and would be rolled out from 2012-2016. Following a series of public hearings the program could be formally adopted by municipal authorities by the end of July.

The program, which has been nicknamed ‘Information city,’ consists of four major spheres of modernization and development: electronic services for citizens and businesses; development of smart municipal management systems; upgrades for the city’s telecommunications infrastructure and development of the city’s media and advertising sector.

It is expected that some 122.9 billion rubles of the total program budget, over $4 billion, will come from private investors. The remainder will be funded by the Moscow city government. In particular, private investors would finance the two most expensive parts of the program – the development of telecommunications infrastructure and the mass media and advertising sectors in Moscow.

As for government services, the program aims at a total shift to e-government: by 2016, with 100% of relevant city services available in electronic format, up from just 3% of municipal services online in 2010. Students of all Moscow schools, particularly, would receive their marks in electronic journals. All city residents would be able to schedule appointments with a doctor through the city’s portal, or a consolidated call center, or through a network of special information kiosks or conventional ATMs.

According to the program, the penetration of fixed line broadband Internet with speeds in excess of 10 Mb/s would grow from 15% in 2010 to 65% in 2016. Video surveillance systems would be installed city wide. It is also expected that over 70% of public utilities would be controlled electronically.  Moscow authorities are banking on standardized information solutions that can be shared across multiple administrative functions to cut costs. The proportion of such multipurpose systems in the city’s infrastructure should reach 30% by 2016, according to the program.




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