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Russia Ukraine: 100,000 MORE technicians leave – IT industry exodus ‘to save their careers’ | World | News

Following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, as many as 70,000 IT personnel are said to have left – with another 100,000 expected to depart in April. French news channel CNews said: “IT professionals are in a hurry to leave the country as soon as possible, not wanting to face a sharply deteriorating economic situation and not paying attention to various measures to support the country’s IT industry.”

Similarly, the Russian Association for Electronic Communications (RAEC) reports some 50,000 to 70,000 people working in IT have left the country so far, which they describe as only the “first wave”.

The group said the only things holding more people back from leaving were expensive airline tickets, house prices and difficulty making transactions in the wake of a backlash of Western sanctions.

Sergey Plugotarenko, head of RAEC, said: “There will definitely be a second wave, according to our estimates, from 70,000 to 100,000 people will leave in April. It’s just IT people.”

Samuel Bendett, a research analyst and AI specialist, told “The exodus of IT workers is associated with the massive withdrawal of Western and global high-tech giants from Russia. Many of those who leave actually work for the company. and for those companies, so they’re basically trying to save their careers but going to markets where their skills can be in demand.

“There will definitely be an impact on many sectors and industries in the country due to the departure of global IT companies from Russia.”

Bendett said the hardest hit “probably” was the IT sector which “relyed the most on international cooperation”. This includes data centers, cloud computing and artificial intelligence research and development.

Natalya Kasperskaya, CEO of InfoWatch, said that most of the young IT people with “good mental organization” are fleeing Russia.

He said: “They are young people, in many ways related to the West, they are working on Western hardware, such system breakdowns make them tremble, so they need to be reassured”.

This is not a new phenomenon as IT professionals had left the country long before the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

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However, the defense and technology expert added: “With about 200,000 people leaving, this represents a tiny fraction of Russia’s larger IT workforce. So there are many who are still holding on because they can’t leave or because they may not want to leave. There are many Russian IT companies are now stepping up and stepping in to fill the void left by international companies that have left, offering their own solutions to replace global IT brands.”

The Russian authorities are making every effort to keep IT specialists in the country by creating various incentive measures for workers.

President Vladimir Putin signed a decree on a package of actions to support IT workers in early March. One of the main points in the decree was suspension from the army. The companies themselves also receive significant tax benefits, various grants and preferential loans.

However, those efforts appear to be fruitless so far – as tens of thousands of other IT specialists, as well as security personnel and the rest of the company, are expected to leave in the coming weeks.