Tax deduction not indicated on the map // Development of 5G networks will be stimulated by other benefits

ANO Digital Economy approved a roadmap to stimulate investment activity of telecom operators. It did not include the main proposal of operators – the extension of the investment tax deduction to digital infrastructure so that they can build more networks for the same budgets. The state imposes a great social burden on operators, but did not offer them really effective benefits, experts and market participants complain.

At a meeting of the working group of ANO Digital Economy on June 25, they approved a “road map” to stimulate investment activity of operators for the development of networks using advanced technologies, the Ministry of Digital Industry told Kommersant. In the near future, the ministry will present a “road map” for consideration by the presidium of the right commission on digital development, they added.

The map did not include the most anticipated market expansion of the investment tax deduction to digital infrastructure, such as the construction of communication networks and data centers.

This measure would make it possible to build 10-15% more infrastructure within the planned budgets, reminds ER-Telecom. According to the deputy head of the Ministry of Digital Industry Dmitry Kim, the ministry will continue to work on activities that were not included in the map. What these measures, he did not specify, but, according to a Kommersant source in the communications market, this is just a tax deduction. The head of the working group, Anna Serebryannikova, assured that the federal project “Information Infrastructure” will fix the norm on the annual update of the “road map”.

The roadmap envisages a number of measures, including an increase in frequency use charges for companies that prevent the introduction of 5G and do not release the frequency bands necessary for the use of the new standard.

In addition, the card provides for the simplification of operators’ access to apartment buildings and the study of the issue of granting organizations – data center operators preferential access to the electricity market.

The project to stimulate investment activity of telecom operators has been discussed since last year and caused a lot of disagreements between the departments (see Kommersant on October 26); the Ministry of Finance and the Ministry of Energy had complaints. “The investment tax deduction appeared to be a measure with the fastest and most significant financial effect of all those considered,” says Emil Baburov, director of the tax and legal department at Deloitte in the CIS.

How investments in 5G will worsen the financial performance of the communications market

The implementation of these measures is important, as it will reduce costs when deploying 5G networks and developing cloud solutions that require large computing resources of the data center, MTS notes. The implementation of the roadmap will significantly improve the business climate and opportunities for the development of the telecommunications industry, says a MegaFon representative, noting that the company is preparing new proposals.

The roadmap does not contain any fundamentally new proposals, states the Director General of the Institute for Internet Research Karen Ghazaryan. However, market participants will be able to gain some benefit, he notes:

Each such norm individually does not give fantastic results, but in the aggregate it will bring a significant financial effect for the market. “

In 2020, operators in Moscow alone increased investments in infrastructure by a third, to 23 billion rubles, reported in the Moscow department of information technology. But the state has not offered really effective benefits, says a Kommersant source in the communications market: “We are asked to give free access to socially significant sites, but they are not allowed to increase tariffs. And competition with quality requires even more capital expenditures. “

How telecom operators entered into a new agreement on the development of the 5G standard in the Russian Federation

The tax deduction for the construction of infrastructure is the only truly global proposal of operators, and it never entered the “map”, sums up the CEO of Telecom Daily Denis Kuskov. As for the benefits for electricity for the data center, there are no agreements with energy companies, so it is written with a pitchfork on the water, and facilitating access to apartment buildings was relevant ten years ago, he said.

Dmitry Shestoperov, Anastasia Gavrilyuk

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