The quota on the number of foreigners working in Russia is expected to rise next year to 600 thousand. As a Rosbalt correspondent reports, this was announced yesterday by Russian Immigration Minister Vladimir Zorin. He said this year's quota was set at 500 thousand. 'Russia is becoming an attractive place for foreigners to work,' the minister explained.
Mr Zorin said that 6 million people arrived in Russia between 1989 and 2002. 'Our country has the third largest number of immigrants after the US and the UK,' he said. 'We have therefore started trying to regulate immigration. Several measures were taken last year to do this including the introduction of an immigration card, which have helped us to calculate how many foreigners there really are in the country. In other countries illegal immigration accounts for just 10-20% whereas in Russia it accounts for the majority,' Mr Zorin said. He added that nowadays people travel from 119 different countries to make a living in Russia. They are mostly from CIS countries and generally earn their living in the building trade.