Igor Yefremov, a Researcher of the International Research Department of Political Demography and Macrodynamics at the Gaidar Institute, told “Nezavisimaya gazeta” that rapid departure of even a few hundred thousand Russians of working age causes a visible blow to the labor market.

Russian enterprises are distracted due to the exodus of employees after the September events, including women. Some of them treat remote working with suspicion. Some employers have come across shimmering applicants who have applied for an office job, but in fact ended up outside of Russia. These observations are shared by representatives of the labor market. According to the HR company Ancor, the issue of workers leaving Russia affected three quarters of more than 650 organizations surveyed. However, estimates of the scale of Russian emigration vary greatly. Earlier, media provided more impressive figures of the Russians’ outflow, which the Kremlin described as far from reality.

“I consider estimates of the scale of the Russians’ departure due to partial mobilization at 500.000 to 1 mln people to be highly exaggerated," Igor Yefremov, an employee of the Gaidar Institute told Nezavisimaya Gazeta.

Objective evidence will only be published by the receiving countries' migration statistics on how many Russian citizens have received official status that allow them to live in the country at least all year round. Such data will be published starting next year, however, the methodology for determining migration status in each country is different, therefore it will be difficult to compare them, the expert explained.

“Nevertheless, based on the dynamics of such figures and by comparing them with return border crossings (in those rare cases when border guards of certain countries report such information), I can make a rough assumption that due to partial mobilization, between 250 and 350.000 people have left Russia so far having no previous plans, including family members not subject to mobilization in any scenario," said Igor Yefremov. According to his assumption, substantial proportion of these people will return to Russia before January 2023.

“However, the survey's findings proving that 76% of companies have experienced employee exodus do not contradict to the assumed scale of departures, especially given that the survey pointed to a strong concentration of such losses by employers in a narrow sphere, which can predominantly be attributed to IT," Yefremov clarified. All the more so because in this sphere men predominate among those employed, while the nature of work and the size of salaries more often allow employees to have the resources and opportunities to relocate.

However, Igor Yefremov warned: a rapid departure of even several hundred thousand working age Russians becomes a significant blow on the labor market, which already suffers from a constant decline in the number of young workers due to the age structure of the population and low birth rate, and from this year it has also suffered some additional losses.