Staunton, January 26 – The number of people taking Russian citizenship rose by 84 percent from 2018 to 2019, from 269,000 to 498,000. Of the latter, almost 60 percent were Ukrainians. Others came from Kazakhstan (50,500), Tajikistan (44,700), Uzbekistan (19,400), Kyrgyzstan (9300) and Turkmenistan (1300) (migrantnews.info/ru/post/7108).
Over the same period, the number of foreigners receiving temporary residence permits fell from 268,700 in 2018 to 234,700 in 2019, and those with permanent residence permits, a new status introduced in November 2019, fell from 191,400 to 182,000. The number of foreigners with the right to work in Russia rose from 1.67 million to 1.77 million.
These are the official figures, but experts say that the actual number of foreigners working in Russia is likely higher because rising costs for patents is causing many foreigners actually employed by Russian firms to avoid registration and thus avoid paying the new higher costs. That may also be driving more to seek citizenship as well.