As a result of the Ukraine war and the sanctions imposed on Russia, more and more skilled workers are fleeing to Germany. This is reported by the German Press Agency. Since March, Russian specialists from the IT sector in particular have been fleeing the country (we reported), but the initiative mostly comes from companies.
Russian skilled workers: fleeing to Germany
As reported by dpa, the majority of the skilled workers leaving for Germany were already working for a German company in their home country. As a Foreign Office spokeswoman confirms, more than 600 visas were issued from the beginning of the war until the beginning of May, and in April alone there were around 350 visas for the purpose of gainful employment in Moscow, the report continues. Saint Petersburg accounted for another 190 work visas for the same period.
These are visas for particularly long stays that significantly exceed the standard period of a Schengen visa of up to 90 days. The law firm Fragomen Global in Frankfurt am Main provided support, as Katharina Vorländer confirmed to dpa. In the weeks since the war began, she said, they have provided support work on more than 400 applications for work visas for Russian citizens entering Germany.
German companies take initiative
“The initiative usually comes from the companies, some of which transfer entire departments to Germany,” Vorländer continues. Companies from the IT sector in particular are a driving force here, he says, including Deutsche Telekom and SAP, some of which have completely shut down their operations in Russia.
At the same time, however, the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution warns of an increased risk of industrial espionage, mainly due to the sanctions imposed on Russia. Here, employees with Russian citizenship employed in Germany are said to be particularly at risk.
For Russia, the departure of IT specialists is becoming more and more of a problem, especially since there is no end in sight here, either in the short term or in the long term. In April, Russia already lifted the compulsory military service for IT specialists, while at the beginning of May, it began considering allocating the vacancies toqualified prisoners with IT skills via forced labor.