Record number of foreign workers arrive in Russia

A strong ruble attracted a large number of migrants in the second quarter of 2022

More than 3.12 million people entered Russia in the second quarter of 2022 to work, TASS reported on Monday citing data from auditing and consultancy network FinExpertiza.

« In the second quarter of 2022, there were 4.16 million foreigners registered for immigration… while 3.12 million people (75%) indicated work as their reason for arrival. This is a record quarterly value for the entire period of statistics available since 2017,the analytics firm said in its report, seen by TASS.

The number of arrivals seeking work is a third higher than the same period last year, when 2.34 million foreigners came to work in Russia.

According to FinExpertiza head Elena Trubnikova, the first quarter of the year was marked by an exodus of migrant workers due to the sharp drop in the ruble under pressure from Ukraine-related sanctions. However, since the ruble recouped its losses in early April due to changes in Russia’s monetary policy and counter-sanctions, the number of arrivals has surged. According to the analyst, while some of the migrants were in Russia before, many new people have been registered over the past three months.

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« This was mainly affected by the unexpected strength of the rouble, as a result of which the Russian labor market became more attractive to foreigners, as their foreign currency earnings increased,she said.

Apart from the strengthening ruble, analysts said that the growth of the construction industry has attracted many new entrants, as this sphere traditionally employs a large number of foreigners.

According to data from FinExpertiza, about half of all migrant workers (1.54 million people) came from Uzbekistan, about 52,000 came from Tajikistan and an increasing number of workers arrived from Kyrgyzstan, Armenia, Azerbaijan , Belarus, Kazakhstan, China, Ukraine and Moldova. Data shows that outside the former Soviet republics, many workers came from the EU, the United States, China, India and the United Arab Emirates.

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