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Plans to set up digital watchdog in Belarus

MINSK (BelTA) – Belarus has plans to create a tech regulator, First Deputy Prime Minister Nikolai Snopkov told reporters following the meeting hosted by Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko, BelTA has learned.

According to Nikolai Snopkov, it is difficult and time-consuming to determine a single state regulator in the digital sphere. However, the government is not going to establish a new tech regulator by simply changing the name of an existing government agency. It is necessary, in his opinion, “to change the purpose and essence, since it is not enough just to set up a new single regulator”. “It is very important to create a vertical of competences in each ministry, in each field of expertise, in other words, to put together a team of people who would understand what needs to be done to digitalize industries and sectors and how to use digitalization to increase productivity,” he said.

This matter will be revisited this summer. A possibility for the IT sector and the HTP resident companies to extend their reach into other areas will also be discussed. This is expected to give a boost to labor productivity and economic growth.

Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko spoke about the country's digital development at the meeting on 16 March. According to the head of state, a comprehensive decree regulating this field is in the works. This document will allow concentrating available resources in several key areas, setting up a single government regulation body, and making the most of China's experience in building a digital society.

“I believe that these issues should have been addressed a long time ago. Two years ago, we agreed that the government would develop fundamental guidelines, and other government agencies would help it with this. It is necessary to make sure that all proposals are thoroughly studied and verified. We should consider them at a separate meeting in the summer,” the president said.