There is an urgent need to address migration within the development community


This page in:

Migration provides a fast path to poverty reduction, perhaps a faster path than that offered by trade, capital flows and technology transfer. Yet, it remains ignored, its potential untapped by the development community.

Over 230 million international migrants send home over $400 billion in remittances, providing a stable lifeline to perhaps a billion people in poor, small and fragile countries. Remittances finance necessities, healthcare, education for children, and even small business investments. In the destination country, migrants provide labor and scarce skills for their employers, and create businesses and jobs for others. Migrants facilitate trade, skills, and technology transfers between countries. Diaspora savings are estimated to exceed $400 billion annually, and can be mobilized for financing of development goals. By some estimates, the global welfare gains from a relatively small increase in cross-border labor mobility could be larger than complete trade liberalization.

Yet, migration also poses daunting challenges for policy makers: in the origin countries, loss of critical skills and impacts on children left behind; in the destination countries, job competition for native workers, the fiscal burden of providing social services; impacts on national culture and identity. In recent years, immigration is often wrongly associated with threats to national security.

Developing countries face both sets of challenges. In particular, many developing countries that are also major destination countries for migration are grossly under-equipped to address these challenges. Worse, migration pressures are set to grow exponentially due to demographic changes. There is an urgent need to address migration within the development community.

Zakir Hussain
September 20, 2013

Yes, your observations of both the sides of migration are meticulous. However, we need more to strengthen the position of the migrants. for this, one relevant step could be to evaluate the contributions of the migrant workers in the host economies. This is quite missing in our recent literature. We need to develop
effective methodology which could capture the contribution of the migrants in host economies; this will give some respect and relevance to the migrants there. the position of return migrants also need our attention. Despite so much contribution to their native countries, the feel isolated and unfit for the system. The government needs to start permanent programmes for their reintegration.

Sasa Stevanovic
September 22, 2013

Poorest country and country that cant solve problem for creating jobs should have strategy for building strong diaspora. For Bosnia where more than 60% of young people are without oportunity to work best solution is to have programms for learning foreign languages and other skills for working abroad.

stephen Nzia Azabo
September 22, 2013

migration is the best option for developing economies but the challenge is so huge the distinstion countries are not well coming take case of australia where you are deported forcefully to equitoria guine in Africa another case in point is isearl which prison migrantes from africa for a period of upto 2 years without trial so its not easy although its the best option to reduce om poverty in developing countries thanks.