At the opening of the Forum, Alexander Khinshtein, Chairman of the State Duma Committee of the Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation on Information Policy, Information Technologies and Communications, noted that the uniqueness of Runet is that, as part of the global network, it is safe and sovereign, independent of external decisions. "An important part of the web is the opportunity to address inequality, the internet provides that opportunity. The state pays great attention to the development of the Internet, realizing the extent of its responsibility to society," he said.

At the same time, Russia, as explained by Tatyana Matveeva, Head of the Presidential Department for the Development of Information and Communication Technologies and Communications Infrastructure, is open to dialogue and international cooperation in the field of Internet development. And it is ready to host the 20th anniversary UN Internet Governance Forum in 2025. "We hope that a large number, including foreign guests, will come to us and we will be able to look at how we can build our future together with experts on our platform," she remarked, recalling that Russia was one of the first countries to create and sign the Code of Ethics concerning artificial intelligence.

The Director of the Center for Global IT Cooperation, speaking at the "Data Economy: International Cooperation and Technology Leadership" session reminded that nowadays the world pays special attention to the topic of data economy, including the UN - a separate section of the Global Digital Compact is dedicated to data management. He also spoke about the creation by the Centre of a Russian marketplace, which should become a tool for finding potential customers and independently promoting Russian IT solutions in foreign countries. At the same time, it provides useful tips and step-by-step instructions for foreign companies and investors on how to open and run a business in Russia itself. The main task that the marketplace solves is to explain why our country is an attractive exporter of digital solutions.

In the final "Global Digital Governance and Cooperation" workshop, moderated by Roman Chukov, Head of the Center's project area, participants separately discussed the Global Digital Compact (GDC), its significance for the international community, as well as what the future holds for the Global Internet Governance Forum (IGF) and how ICT decision-making platforms at the global level have been transformed over time.

Speakers noted that the GDC zero draft currently leaves more questions than answers, particularly because it lacks the very thing the treaty is all about - spelling out the responsibilities of digital platforms. At the moment, platforms are self-regulated through a user agreement. This is definitely not in the interest of the Global South, because IT giants can use the lack of national regulation (such as GDPR) in these states to their advantage and violate users' rights. In addition, the SDGs leave the IGF's role as a forum for discussing Internet governance issues in limbo. Therefore, the task of the expert community in the near future is to try to resolve all these issues and reach a compromise between the stakeholders.

The Forum takes place on April 9-10, 2024 in a hybrid format. Its participants are industry experts, businessmen, government and public figures. The Forum was organized by the .RU/.RF Coordination Center and the Competence Center for Global IT Cooperation with the support of the Ministry of Digital Development, Communications and Mass Media of the Russian Federation.