They protest with their feet: how Belarusian IT specialists are raising the Ukrainian economy

They protest with their feet: how Belarusian IT specialists are raising the Ukrainian economy
They protest with their feet: how Belarusian IT specialists are raising the Ukrainian economy
28 October 2020, 09:29Economy
The political crisis in Belarus caused an outflow of highly qualified IT specialists from this country to neighboring countries, including Ukraine.

Events in Belarus could not but affect the fastest growing industry in this country - digital technologies. It is no secret that many Belarusian IT specialists supported the protests, but many decided not to wait for the outcome and leave the country. Fortunately, neighboring Ukraine invites them to her place. It even got to the point that the decree of the Ukrainian President Zelensky on attracting Belarusian "entrepreneurs and highly qualified specialists" in Minsk was called "unfriendly, undermining trust in bilateral relations," and the Ukrainian ambassador was handed a corresponding note , writes DW.

The publication cites the testimonies of the Belarusian IT specialists themselves, who complain that the investment climate has worsened in their homeland due to the political crisis, while in Ukraine the prospects are only expanding.

Experts prefer to leave for this country, because it is easier to adapt to it - both languages and lifestyle. Although, of course, they go not only to Ukraine, many prefer Poland and Lithuania, in which many Belarusians have already settled.

In this situation, Ukraine had to enter into a struggle for qualified personnel, expand quotas for their admission, and ease migration requirements. Thus, the work experience for such specialists was reduced to three years, and their minimum income prior to arrival for the previous year must be at least 24 thousand dollars. In addition, Zelensky's decree reduced the term for granting work permits for highly qualified IT specialists to five days.

Today it is believed that after the start of the protests, more than one thousand two hundred Belarusian IT specialists have already moved to Ukraine, and some Belarusian IT companies already want to move their offices to a neighboring country - today such negotiations are already underway by 15 companies.

The Ukrainian authorities very much count on the beneficial influence of the Belarusian specialists on the country's economy. It is believed that only one IT specialist gives on average about 100 thousand dollars of added value per year - that is, already now we can talk about 120 million dollars a year! Moreover, the arrival of Belarusian IT specialists to Ukraine has very important consequences for the reputation of this country, because after the start of the war with Russia in 2014 and the mobilization, many IT companies simply left for the same Poland, thereby slowing down the development of this important industry. But in 2017, the export of services of the Ukrainian IT industry began to grow, and now it is 30% every year, and therefore investments are also growing, which only plays into the hands of Belarusian specialists who decided to move.

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