The government, together with the largest Russian software producers and consumers, is trying to create a mechanism for guaranteed demand for software, which should replace foreign solutions. The new mechanism is designed to help developers justify the need for a state-funded grant and release relevant products for real customers. However, experts say that with this approach, the new software may turn out to be specialized for a particular enterprise, which will limit the applicability of the software. associations (APKIT, ARPE, ARPP “Domestic Soft” and “Russoft”) and officials discussed the principle of operation of industrial competence centers (ICC, unite representatives of various industries that need to replace foreign software) and development competence centers (CCR, they include developers software), which, according to the plan of the authorities, should stimulate the development of the Russian IT market. It was primarily about the interaction of Russian customers with developers.
Large Russian software customers should analyze their needs for software that cannot be supported or purchased, and then turn to developers for clarification on what solutions are already available on the market, and which ones have yet to be developed, one of the meeting participants says: “If the software required by the customer does not yet exist, the developer will apply to RFRIT for a grant to create it.”
RFRIT is funded from the budget of the Russian Federation — in particular, within the framework of the implementation of the measures of the national project “Digital Economy”. There are also non-state sources – for example, 1.5 billion rubles, which Yandex transferred to the fund in order to resolve the legal conflict around the “sorcerers” (see “Kommersant” dated May 28, 2021). According to a Kommersant source close to RFRIT, for 2022 the budget for issuing grants to software developers is 4.5 billion rubles, another 1.8 billion rubles. pledged to support projects for the digitalization of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). The basic amount of grants is up to 500 million rubles, especially significant projects can qualify for funding up to 6 billion rubles. for up to three years. As of May, 178 applications were submitted for tenders for a total of 22.1 billion rubles. The number of approved applications and the amount of support implemented in RFRIT are not disclosed.
The problem is that developers cannot always defend their application before RFRIT, that is, justify the need for a particular product. According to the top manager of a large Russian company, the mechanism of interaction between the ICC and the CCR should provide developers, on the one hand, with customers for IT solutions, and on the other hand, with government investments through the fund. Software developers must understand in advance for whom and for what tasks they create a product, adds another participant in the meeting. The Ministry of Digital Development reported that during the meeting “issues of the procedure for the participation of experts from associations in the evaluation of projects” were discussed, the RFRIT did not respond to Kommersant’s requests. , which he expressed at the CIPR-2022 forum in June. In July, Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Chernyshenko announced that the government intends to allocate 37.1 billion rubles by 2024. to co-finance the creation and implementation of new domestic solutions. Sources of Kommersant in the IT market say that the government expects to provide developers with guaranteed demand, similar to the mechanism of end-to-end projects for manufacturers of radio electronics. Initially, it was assumed that “anchor customers” (large companies and state corporations) in the case of the purchase of Russian electronics and equipment will be compensated up to 50% of its cost. The mechanism has not yet been launched.
President of the Russoft Association, Valentin Makarov, believes that the idea of linking consumers and software producers makes sense. However, he clarifies, there is “a risk that the consumer may limit his specification to his own understanding of how the software should work in his enterprise.” This means that the requirements for the product will narrow and it will not be able to be used by enterprises of different segments.
Developers of a number of software categories do not need state support, but a change in the regulatory framework, the chairman of the board of directors of Basalt SPO, head Alexey Smirnov: “The problem is that many Russian programs that are in the software registry and also receive development support are compatible only with Windows, which makes it impossible to implement them on domestic operating systems.” Mr. Smirnov adds that state information systems (GIS) also work correctly only under Windows: “We believe that for companies that want to get into the register of Russian software, it is necessary to gradually introduce requirements for compatibility with Linux and domestic operating systems.”