MOSCOW, August 13. /TASS/. PepsiCo and Danone have refuted reports of discrimnating against graduates of Crimean universities when hiring people, representatives of the companies told TASS on Tuesday.
"This is absolutely not true. PepsiCo does not have any restrictions when it comes to universities. The company makes a decision on whether to hire someone exclusively based on professional skills and experience of a particular candidate," commuications director for PepsiCo Russia Alexander Kostikov told TASS.
Danone also told TASS that they hire people based on their professional skills and experience. "We don't have, and never had, any restrictions in regards to universities. The company employs people of different nationalities and 'geographies'," a spokesperson for Danone said.
On Tuesday, the Russian Foreign Ministry said it hopes that Russian affiliates of Danone and PepsiCo will not discriminate against Crimean residents when making decisions about hiring people. The foreign ministry noted that participants in the "Territory of Meanings" youth educational forum in Solnechnogorsk said that these companies refuse to hire graduates from Crimean universities.
"We hope that in this case, it is not an attempt by Russian affiliates of Danone and PepsiCo multinational corporations to discriminate against citizens of our country on territorial or any other basis," the foreign ministry wrote on its official Facebook account.
"In this regard, we want to remind that in March 2014, Crimea became an indivisible part of the Russian Federation as a result of expression of free will by Crimeans," the ministry noted. "Diplomas of universities in Crimea definitely have the same status as similar education documents issued by any other Russian universities. Their programs and methods are in line with the highest Russian and international standards," the ministry said.
The Russian Foreign Ministry added that graduates of Crimean universities "are brilliant young specialists with high qualifications, whose knowledge and skills are highly valued in various companies.".