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RUSSIA – Immigration Authorities Reorganised

, 25/04/2016

Effective 5 April 2016, the Russian President has signed a decree reorganising the federal immigration authorities.

Details of the Reorganisation

Under the decree (No. 156) the Federal Migration Service (FMS) of Russia has been abolished, and its functions, responsibilities and staff (with a reduction of 30%) transferred to a department of the Ministry of Internal Affairs (MIA).

All organisational and staff arrangements under the Decree are to be finalized before 1 June 2016.

In recent years, FMS officials have complained that the service is not an enforcement agency and is therefore not able to conduct investigations or arrest suspects. The current reorganization is intended to solve this problem.

The FMS has been an independent government service since 2014, before which it was part of the MIA.

Action Items

  • Expect some delays in the processing of immigration applications as the service is reorganized as a ministerial department and staff numbers cut.