Russia’s largest provider of digital services, Rostelecom, has suspended the development of its data centers due to a lack of access to equipment.

The partially state-owned telecoms and colocations provider said that it could no longer build facilities in Russia's western 'Central Federal District' due to parts issues.

The company is focused on using its available equipment to finish projects that are near completion, including in Moscow and St. Petersburg.

Rostelecom HQ
– Google Maps

Most major European and American tech suppliers have suspended sales in the country due to the unprovoked invasion of Ukraine, while some have pulled out entirely. Numerous APAC businesses (outside of China) have also paused sales.

Earlier this month, IBM, Cisco, and HPE announced they would leave Russia.

Intel, AMD, Nvidia, and contract chipmaker TSMC have all stopped sales to Russia. Google, Microsoft, and Oracle have suspended work in the country, along with Apple, Netflix, Sabre, Ericsson, SAP, Infosys, Atos, PayPal, Mastercard, and Visa. Last month, Siemens said that it would leave the country, while Schneider Electric said that it is selling its Russian operations to local management.

Rostelecom has an even harder job getting equipment than most Russian data center firms as it is also sanctioned by the US and UK governments, while the EU has sanctioned the company's president.

Rostelecom confirmed to Kommersant that it was pausing projects "in order to wait for the market situation to stabilize."

Pavel Kulakov, founder of data center and cloud provider Oxygen, told the local publication that components ordered last year have not arrived. Among them are circuit breakers, fan units, and diesel engines. "There are even more difficulties with server equipment: very small, limited deliveries are possible," he said.

With limited supplies, colocation renting prices are thought to have risen by an average of 25 percent. As maintaining existing data centers becomes harder, that price may continue to grow.

The Russian government is also looking to store its increasing trove of surveillance data, but is running out of space in its own facilities. The government is thought to be preparing to buy out all the capacity at commercial data centers (potentially including IT already contracted out), and take over the IT resources of companies that have announced their withdrawal from Russia.

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