Since 1 in January, 2013 in Russia has a new, significantly improved version of the program for facilitating the voluntary resettlement of compatriots. The program itself has become indefinite, the circle of family members who can participate in it has been significantly expanded, and now you can choose your place of residence without focusing, as before, on the list of specific municipalities. All this can significantly increase the number of immigrants from the former Soviet republics, most of whom, as shown by data from a recent survey, are aimed at emigration to Russia.
The study of the situation and migration attitudes of Russian compatriots living abroad was carried out by order of the Russian Foreign Ministry. Its geography included 8 countries of the near and far abroad, on whose territory a large part of ethnic Russians and other Russian-speaking population is concentrated - Germany, Latvia, Ukraine, Moldova, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan. Thus, the European and Asian regions were “uniformly” represented in the study, which makes it possible to trace the difference in the migration attitudes of their Russian population. On the example of Europe, it is possible to estimate the differences between individual countries that are radically different in their standard of living, such as, for example, Germany and Moldova.
A total of 7200 people were interviewed - approximately 900 in each country, including both urban and rural populations, as well as different age and gender groups. And not only ethnic Russians were polled. The study covered three groups of compatriots - citizens of the Russian Federation permanently residing abroad, representatives of the diaspora of the peoples of the Russian Federation, and representatives of the titular ethnic groups who consider themselves to be Russian compatriots. At the same time, the absolute majority of survey participants identified themselves as Russians. As a result of the research, data on the social, economic, and political situation of the Russian diaspora in key countries of its residence, the degree of awareness of the resettlement program, and readiness to participate in it were collected for the first time in such a wide context.
The first thing that catches your eye when meeting with the results of the study is the sharp difference between countries in terms of the ratio of compatriots who want and do not want to move to Russia.
From Germany - a state with one of the highest standard of living in the world, almost no one is going to leave. 87,8% of German compatriots to the question about their desire to move to the Russian Federation answered “rather no” or “certainly not”, and only 4,2% said “rather yes” or “yes”.
4,3% are tempted to move to Russia from time to time, another 3,7% noted that they have such a desire among their family members. A similar picture is taking shape in Latvia. 85,2% of Latvian compatriots do not intend to move to Russia, and only 4,5% have such plans. Moreover, only 1,4% of respondents are firmly set on emigration. Since the standard of living in Latvia is noticeably lower than German, most compatriots seem to be attracted mainly by the country's membership in the Schengen zone and the opportunity to move freely around Europe.
In European CIS countries, the situation is markedly different from the EU. In Ukraine, the country with the largest Russian diaspora in the world (about 8 million), 65,2% of compatriots expressed their interest in moving to Russia in one form or another. 15,4% of them to the question about the desire to emigrate answered "certainly" yes ", and another 21,5% -" rather "yes." Only 17,4% is not configured to relocate, and only 7,8% is firmly. Such a large percentage of potential migrants is explained by the economic attractiveness of Russia and the presence of kinship ties. 42,9% was explained by economic factors, 32,9% was explained by the opportunity to realize their potential, 39,8% was explained by the desire to reunite with relatives and 23,1% by the desire to get a better education. Despite the fact that the only state language in Ukraine is Ukrainian, and Russian has regional status in several areas, ethnocultural factors play no significant role in shaping migration patterns. 13,8% of respondents among the reasons for the move indicated conflicts with local residents or falling out of the Russian cultural environment, which is explained by the inclusion of Western regions in the sample. Another 5,8% reported harassment by the authorities. However, in general, the ethnocultural situation in Ukraine is assessed as favorable.
In Moldova, the number of people willing to emigrate to Russia is even higher. The ratio of compatriots who are aimed and not aimed at moving reminds Germany exactly the opposite. 82,6% of respondents are more or less determined to move to Russia, including 16,6% - firmly. Only 1,6% responded to the question about the desire to emigrate to the Russian Federation "certainly not", and another 4,8% - "rather not." The main reason for thinking about a change of residence is the deplorable state of the local economy and the desire to reunite with relatives. Since the economic situation in Moldova is much worse than in Ukraine, the percentage of those who want to move to Russia is much higher.
Affects and local specificity. Nationalist and pro-Romanian sentiments are strong in Moldova, so one of the motives for emigration is the desire to live in the midst of Russian culture.
In Central Asia, the migration attitudes of compatriots are noticeably different not only from Western and Eastern Europe, but also from country to country. Most of this region belongs to the zone of the traditional spread of Muslim civilization and the residence of Asian, mainly Turkic peoples. The European population lives here in the conditions of an ethnic and foreign religious environment, which determines the specificity of its situation.
In Kazakhstan, the most economically successful state in Central Asia, where the Russian Diaspora, the second largest after Ukraine (about 3,7 million), lives, half of compatriots (50,7%) are less or less disposed to move to Russia Moldova and even in Ukraine. At the same time, they firmly intend to move 14%, another 14,7% answered “rather yes” to a question about it, and 22% stated that their migratory moods were inconsistent (“sometimes“ yes ”, sometimes“ no ”). Only 6,7% of compatriots are firmly disposed to stay in Kazakhstan, and 22,3% answered “rather no” to the question about moving. Among the reasons for the move, an approximately equal share is taken by the poor economic situation (37%), the desire to reunite with relatives (36,8%), the ability to realize their potential (36%), and the desire to give a better education to themselves or their children (31%). The more significant pushing factors in Kazakhstan are the desire to live in the Russian cultural environment and the danger of falling out of it (15%), conflicts with the local population (9%) and harassment of the authorities (8%), which reflects such tendencies as the narrowing of the official the use of the Russian language and the growth of nationalist attitudes among the Kazakh population.
In Uzbekistan, which occupies the second place in Central Asia (about 1 million people) in terms of the number of Russian and Russian-speaking people, 58,7% of compatriots are oriented towards moving to Russia - slightly more than in Kazakhstan, but less than in Ukraine and Moldova.
Considering the difficult economic situation and the much lower standard of living than in Kazakhstan, this percentage of people intending to emigrate looks somewhat strange. In many respects, it is explained by informational closeness and limited access to the Russian media, reflected in a noticeably weaker awareness of Uzbek compatriots about the resettlement program. At the same time, the share of those who are firmly set to emigrate in Uzbekistan is noticeably higher than in Kazakhstan (20%), and those who are firmly determined to stay are almost two times lower (3,7%). Among the reasons for moving almost twice the value of a bad economic situation (55%), while the ability to realize their potential (28%), get a good education (27%) and reunite with relatives (25%) is slightly lower.
Kyrgyzstan occupies a special place in the region. In the Soviet period, it became the most Russified republic of Central Asia (except Kazakhstan), largely retaining these positions so far. However, two revolutions (2005 and 2010), as well as violent Kyrgyz-Uzbek clashes in the southern regions (June 2010), led to a sharp deterioration in the political and economic situation. Not surprisingly, the percentage of those wishing to move to Russia is the highest of all the countries surveyed (91,2%), and the percentage of those wishing to stay (8,9%) is one of the lowest. Kyrgyzstan is also ahead of Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan in terms of the number of those who are firmly intending to leave (23,5%) and stay (2,2%). Among the reasons for relocation, the main role is not played by economic motives, but by the desire to get a better education (39%) and reunite with relatives (34,3%). The share of such reasons as harassment by the authorities (23,7%), danger of falling out of Russian culture (21,1%) and conflicts with the local population (12,9%) looks phenomenally high against the background of neighbors.
Preservation of permanent political and economic instability may well make Kyrgyzstan one of the main reservoirs of Russian emigration to Russia.
The only country in Central Asia where there are almost no Russians left today is Tajikistan. Their number today is estimated to be no more than 30 thousand. A significant part of the Russian diaspora consists of pensioners and low-income people who are not able to leave the republic on their own. The share of people seeking to move to Russia is slightly lower here than in Kyrgyzstan (82,7%), but significantly higher than in Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan. At the same time, the percentage of those who are firmly set to emigrate is much higher (34,7%), and lower - those who intend to stay (1%). The main reason for leaving is the difficult economic situation (55,3%), approximately according to 1 / 4 they noted the opportunity to realize their potential, get an education and reunite with relatives in the Russian Federation. Fears about falling out of the Russian cultural environment (7,7%), conflicts with the local population (6,3%) and government harassment (4,3%) against the background of neighboring Kyrgyzstan look insignificant, much lower than in Kazakhstan and roughly correspond to the level of Uzbekistan.
Comparison of the survey results allows us to make a number of interesting conclusions important for determining the future directions of the migration policy of Russia. The main migration potential of Russians is concentrated in the CIS countries. The percentage of those who intend to relocate to the Russian Federation from the EU states is small and there is no need to focus on them. Those republics of the former USSR that were not part of the European Union, on the contrary, deserve the closest attention. The migration potential of Russian compatriots in the CIS countries is quite large, ranging from 1 / 2 in Kazakhstan to 2 / 3 in Ukraine and 9 / 10 in Kyrgyzstan. The main reason for their departure is the difficult economic, ethnocultural and, to a lesser extent, political situation. The crisis nature of the development of most CIS countries suggests that the effect of “push factors” will continue in the future, which will help to maintain migration attitudes. In the event of an aggravation of the socio-political situation, as happened in Kyrgyzstan, the flow of Russian immigrants may increase markedly. The “Kyrgyz” version of the development of migration processes should be borne in mind, since the externally stable states of Central Asia, including Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan, are not insured from it.
The migration potential of the Russian population of the CIS countries according to the results of the study can be estimated at 8 million people. And this is without taking into account the Russian-speaking population, which is also among the possible migrants.
Given that Russia faces the task of resettling 300 thousands of people annually for permanent residence, the number of foreign Russians may be enough for 20-25 years - until the demographic situation finally returns to normal and begins a noticeable natural increase in the indigenous population. The popularity of the compatriots resettlement program is growing. During 2012, almost 63 thousand people moved to Russia thanks to her. - half of all participants in the program. And to increase this figure is quite realistic, providing, for example, immigrants with land for the construction of their own housing and preferential construction loans. All possibilities for the implementation of such a policy from the Russian state is.