Dmitry Gudkov ‘One less engineer in Russia is one less missile flying to Ukraine’


“Every engineer that leaves Russia is a missile that isn’t going to reach Ukraine.”Dmitry Gudkov

On Tuesday, a group of exiled opponents of the Kremlin called on EU nations to extend more hospitality to Russians escaping Vladimir Putin’s government, claiming that a lack of trained labor would severely damage the nation’s wartime economy.

Since Putin invaded Ukraine in 2022, up to a million people are thought to have fled Russia; however, some of them have started to return, deterred by the lack of employment opportunities and the challenges associated with obtaining visas and long-term residency permits in both Turkey and the European Union.

Dmitry Gudkov
At the French Institute of International Relations, Russian opposition politician and former lawmaker Dmitry Gudkov unveiled a study of the Russian diaspora in several EU member states, one of the first attempts to study the Ukraine war-triggered exodus
“In Paris, Dmitry Gudkov, a former lawmaker and member of the Russian opposition, stated that one fewer engineer means one fewer missile headed towards Ukraine.”

Speaking at the French Institute of International Relations, Gudkov revealed one of the first studies on the exodus caused by the conflict in Ukraine, which looked at the Russian diaspora in several EU member states.

The study, which was carried out by University of Nicosia researchers on behalf of a recently founded think tank by Gudkov and economist Vladislav Inozemtsev, is based on a survey of more than 3,200 Russians who reside in France, Germany, Poland, and Cyprus.

After Putin’s annexation of Crimea from Ukraine in 2014, nearly 80% of respondents departed Russia. 44% of them left following the full-scale invasion.

The research recommended a wide program of “economic migration” out of Russia as part of its policy recommendations, noting that the majority of the Russians who left the nation were educated “Russian Europeans” who supported Western values.

According to the research, “the strategy to undermine the Putin regime should include orchestrated ‘bleeding’: stimulating the outflow of Russian money and qualified specialists unrelated to the war.”

Moscow’s authorities have admitted that a severe issue now endangering economic growth is a lack of labor.

More work needs to be done, according to Inozemtsev, who also suggested that embracing skilled Russians and their financial resources would deal a more serious blow to the Kremlin than the numerous rounds of Western sanctions that haven’t been able to stop Russia’s war machine thus far.

According to Inozemtsev, “Even we have been surprised by the qualifications of those who have left.”

According to the report, which cited data from 2022, native Cypriots make an average monthly pay of 2,248 euros, whereas Russian immigrants in Cyprus earn an average of more than 5,480 euros ($5,880).

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