The Central Asian countries will bear the major impact of possible Western sanctions against Russia in labor.
The remarks were made by Sureyya Yigit, a lecturer at Istanbul Aydin University.
"The semi-permanent and seasonal manual laborers will not be able to find employment and will be forced to return home. The two countries that will bear the brunt of this will be Tajikistan and, to a lesser extent, Kyrgyzstan. Tajikistan is extremely dependent on remittances, and any decrease in these transfers will have a major impact on its domestic economy, lowering living standards and increasing poverty," the expert told Azernews on April 15.
There will be fewer opportunities for all Central Asian countries in terms of exports, again leading to a knock-on effect on their domestic economies, he added.
"A medium-term impact could be on how Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan view the emerging Eurasian Union," the expert noted. "If Russia, the powerhouse and locomotive of this idea, continues to suffer economically, then the commercial dimension of the integration will lose credibility, leaving its political dimension as the driving force."
Yigit believes that if Russia tightens its immigrant labor controls and insists that priority be given to Eurasian Union member states citizens, then aspiring Central Asian states will be faced with a difficult choice.
"Entering the Union will have costs for Kyrgyzstan's low-tariff economy which is heavily dependent on its role as a transit country for Chinese products. Staying out will mean the loss of remittances, which could also be a catastrophe for Tajikistan," he said.
Yigit believes that if oil and gas prices rise in the short-term, this tide could be stemmed with the latter becoming a better prospect for Tajiks and Kyrgyz.
"Although one must admit that this prospect is quite a distant one at present," he concluded.