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  1. Understanding South Asian Labor Migration Meghan Doherty, Brian Leung, Katie Lorenze, Amanda Wilmarth Prepared for the United States Government Office of South Asia Analysis

  2. Research Question

  3. Roadmap for presentation • Introduction • Data Limitations • Study Area Profile • Regional Analysis • Push & Pull • Economic Impacts of Mass Migration • Macroeconomic • Microeconomic • Stability Concerns, Policy Implications, and Recommendations • Volatility of Labor Demand in GCC Countries • International Security • Vulnerability and Human Right Violations • Data Gathering • Conclusions

  4. introduction • Economic migration is not a new phenomenon • South Asia regional and GCC migration • Policy Informing

  5. Data Limitations • Formal vs. Informal, Official vs. Unofficial • Stock vs. flows • Return migration • Remittance Data

  6. Formal vs. Informal Official vs. Unofficial Formal vs. Informal Official vs. Unofficial Official Channel Remittances Generally bank or other commercial transfers Included in IMF BoP calculations Unofficial Channels Through middlemen or carried across borders Not included in IMF BoP • Formal Migrants • Work permit via official channels • Formal employment contract, official visa to enter receiving country • Restrictions • Informal Migrants • No work permit, contract, visa • Overstay of official visa • Quantities difficult to estimate

  7. Migrant Stocks and Flows Migrant Stocks Migrant Flows Formal migrant laborers Annual departures Sending Country official data Formal migrants only • Foreign born population • Receiving country census data, every 10 years • Formal and informal migrants • UN Bilateral data

  8. Return Migration Estimates • No official return data • Return estimates based on flow and stock data • 2000 stock + 2001 through 2010 flows – 2010 stock

  9. Remittance Data • Money sent home • Official channels only • Does NOT include unofficial channels: • Hawala/Hundi—middleman transactions • Cash or assets carried in person • Central Bank dependent • May not include: • Some or all MTOs • ATM withdraws • World Bank bilateral remittance data

  10. Study Area Profile

  11. Migrant Stocks in GCC Countries

  12. Migrant Stocks in Study Area

  13. Formal Labor Migration Flows to GCC Countries

  14. Formal Labor Migration Flows to GCC Countries

  15. Common themes

  16. Common themes

  17. Common themes Government Management of Migration MOIA – Ministry of Overseas Indian Affairs SLBFE – Sri Lanka Bureau of Foreign Employment DoFE – Department of Foreign Employment (Nepal) BMET – Bureau of Manpower, Employment and Training (Bangladesh)

  18. Regional analysis

  19. Classic economic migration • Push • Poverty • Unemployment • Surplus of labor in home countries • Pull • Employment opportunities • Higher wages

  20. Classic economic migration • Push • Poverty • Unemployment • Surplus of labor in home countries • Pull • Employment opportunities • Higher wages

  21. Official Remittances from GCC Countries to Study Area

  22. Official Remittances from GCC Countries to Study Area

  23. Official Remittances from GCC Countries to Study Area

  24. Official Remittances from GCC Countries to Study Area

  25. Official Remittances from GCC Countries to Study Area

  26. Official Remittances from GCC Countries to Study Area

  27. Official Remittances from GCC Countries to Study Area

  28. Official Remittances from Within Study Area

  29. Official Remittances from Within Study Area

  30. Official Remittances from Within Study Area

  31. Official Remittances from Within Study Area

  32. Official Remittances from Within Study Area

  33. Official Remittances from Within Study Area

  34. Economic Impacts of Mass Migration: Macro

  35. Economic Impacts of Mass Migration: Macro

  36. Economic Impacts of Mass Migration: Macro

  37. Economic Impacts of Mass Migration: Macro

  38. Economic Impacts of Mass Migration: Macro

  39. Economic Impacts of Mass Migration: Macro • In Sri Lanka, Nepal, and Bangladesh, remittances have fueled GDP growth, financed trade deficits, and increased investment rates. • 2012 study of remittances in South Asia found that each 1 percent increase in migrant remittances is associated with a .02 percent increase in the economic growth rate. • India’s economy has been impacted less by remittances, except for the state of Kerala. • Not all macroeconomic impacts are positive.

  40. Economic Impacts of Mass Migration: Micro • Reduced levels of poverty • Raised standards of living • Consumption and investment in human capital Source: GeoCurrents

  41. Stability Concerns: Volatility of Labor Demand in GCC Countries Source: The Guardian

  42. Aid, FDI, and Remittance Inflows as a Percent of GDP

  43. Aid, FDI, and Remittance Inflows as a Percent of GDP

  44. Aid, FDI, and Remittance Inflows as a Percent of GDP

  45. recommendations: remittances • Build domestic economy • Encourage use of remittances for investment • Monitor situation of labor demand in GCC

  46. Stability concerns: International Security • Indo-Nepal Border • Indo-Bangladeshi Border Source: Amnesty International Source: Nepal Mountain News

  47. Stability concerns: Vulnerability and Human Right Violations source: Reuters

  48. recommendations: stability • Potential restrictions of migration flows • Trade off between international security and livelihood of poor • Tightening of remittance channels and borders • Abuses and effect on bilateral relations • Monitor situation at borders • Monitor 2022 FIFA World Cup preparations

  49. recommendations: Data • Average remittances per migrant (official channels) by country pairs • Based on stock data

  50. recommendations: Data • Wider migrant surveys • Receiving country entry points • Sending country return entry points • Bank/MTO new customers • Partner with MTOs • Survey new customers • Review remittance records • Review and clarify study area central bank policies