Every year, millions of migrant workers (and their families) cross national borders in
of decent growing
work and group of
human security. Economic migrants comprise the world’s
estimated at half of these
81 million – or around 90 percent of all international migrants3. migrants are women, now mostly migrating independently.
Globalization has bolstered such movements creating powerful “push” and “pull”
Lack of opportunities
for full employment and decent work in many countless men and women to look beyond their
borders for a living. in various sectors of
Simultaneously, other countries experience shortages of workers their economies creating a demand for labor from abroad. Other
factors for migration include tensions, and widening wage countries.
demographic changes, socio-economic and political gaps within and between developed and developing
Labor migration can be beneficial for those countries that send as well as receive migrant workers. It can facilitate economic development and growth in both countries
entrepreneurship, and supported pension schemes in
revitalized workforces, promoted receiving countries. In developing
Yet the migration process also poses serious challenges. Migration is a costly process and migrants are especially vulnerable to economic shocks and crises in receiving states. Moreover, reports of exploitation and human rights abuses from countries of destination highlight the need for more effective regulation of the migrant labor market, especially among low-skilled, low-status sectors such as domestic work.
At the multilateral level, labor migration management efforts have not kept pace with the migration phenomenon. During the 2006 High-Level Dialogue of the United Nations (UN) General Assembly, member states and partner UN agencies convened– for the first time–to solely discuss global migration, highlighting migration
2 3 4
UNFPA. “Globalization & Labour Migration.” ECOSOC: Geneva, Switzerland. July 5, 2006. “World Migration Report 2005: Costs and benefits of international migration.” Geneva: IOM.