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Migration Policy
April 3, 2006 13:04

The rush of foreign labour has become an issue for Russian authorities, especially in Moscow, where the economic boom and emerging jobs draws more and more employees every year.


Migration policy is being reshaped now by the government, but experts are in two minds as to whether it is a step for better naturalization or a new way to keep foreigners under control.


The quota for temporary residence is to be reduced from 108,000 this year to 107,400 next year. The decree was signed on November 17, but only published on Thursday. Just a thousand will eligible for temporary residence in Moscow.


The largest amount of permissions is expected to be issued in the Volga Federal District.


Another controversial paper appeared on November 14, setting the number of invitations for work at 329,300, a 1 ½ times more on last year’s figures (214,000) but definitely lower than in 2003 (530,000). Moscow leads the list, with a quota of 40,000 people possibly invited.


The analysts point out it is an unbalanced solution. In Moscow, the number of people free to choose their workplace is forty times lower than the number of invitees. But for you to obtain an invitation your future employer will have to contact three governmental departments, submit 21 documents and pay a fee to the boot. A time-consuming affair smelling of red tape.


Earlier, the Russian president urged the government to focus on the migration policy. It has to be reworked to meet the current demands. It does not compensate for the downward trend in population growth any longer.


Experts say priority shall be given to ethnic Russians, who come back from former Soviet Republics. Some of them they stay in Russia illegally – from a formal point of view, of course. It means they don’t have the papers confirming their right for residence.


At the same time, 57 thousands illegal migrants were extradited from the country in 2005. Officials say the Russian territory is used by traffickers to smuggle labourers from Asia and Africa to Western states.


Today, there are 5.5 million migrants living in the country according to official reports, and up to 15 million foreigners according to unofficial sources. Transit migrants is the most dangerous group for the nation’s health, being a breeding ground for drug trafficking and crimes.


Such a situation is also a factor whipping up nationalist sentiments in Russia. The recent Motherland (Rodina) Party election ad is being probed over charges of inciting race hatred. You could download a Russian and French versions of the at


The U.S. is faced up with the same issue. The U.S. president admitted that there are jobs Americans do not want to do. Under his new plan, migrants, mainly from Mexico and Latin America, will be allowed to enter the country and find a job in the legal way. The new foreign labour scheme will help border patrols detect real smugglers and terrorists crossing the border with evil intentions.



Tags: migration Russian society    

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