The equipment necessary to implement controversial new anti-terror laws is not produced in Russia, the Izvestia newspaper reported Thursday, citing unidentified sources close to the Communications Ministry.
Representatives of three major Russian mobile operators — MTS, Beeline and Megafon — confirmed the information. Some of the required hardware is not mass produced anywhere in the world, said MTS spokesman Dmitry Solodovnikov.
A number of Russian companies that specialize in mobile communications equipment use imported components, Andrei Kolesnikov, an expert from the Russian Research Institute for Public Networks told Izvestia.
"Russia will need about 20 years to establish its own production of necessary equipment," Kolesnikov added. "But if we use ready-made components manufactured abroad, it will be possible to start production in two or three years."
Last month, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed into law repressive anti-terror legislation that, among other measures, will oblige mobile operators to store their users' data for six months and decode it at the request of Russian special services.
Russia’s biggest mobile operators repeatedly spoke out against the laws, which according to the companies’ representatives, will cost them billions of dollars and will result in soaring prices for communication services.