Russia’s Mail.Ru Group Opposes Migrants in IT Sector

MOSCOW, October 28 (RIA Novosti) – A leading Russian Internet company slammed a government proposal to attract migrant workers to the country’s information technology sector, local media reported Monday.

The country needs to foster its own IT experts, in part by investing more in their education, said Mail.Ru Group’s education director, Dmitry Voloshin.

Bringing in foreign IT professionals would only be a temporary solution, he said, IT news website reported.

Russia’s Ministry of Communications and Mass Media said last week that it wanted to ease migration rules for foreign computer programmers.

The move could attract up to 200,000 computer-savvy foreigners by 2020, the Vedomosti business daily reported Monday.

About 300,000 Russians are currently employed full-time as computer programmers, according to ministry data cited by Vedomosti.

The country would need another 300,000 IT professionals by 2020, but domestic colleges will only be able to satisfy half of that demand, the report said.

Mail.Ru Group owns a bevy of online services popular in Russia, including its eponymous mail service, the social network and instant message service ICQ. The London-traded company has a staff of 3,000.

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