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RESEARCH AIM

Every year, millions of migrant workers (and their families) cross national borders in

search fastest

of decent growing

work and group of

human security. Economic migrants comprise the world’s

migrants2.

In

2000,

economically

active

migrants

were

estimated at half of these

81 million – or around 90 percent of all international migrants3. migrants are women, now mostly migrating independently.

Nearly

Globalization has bolstered such movements creating powerful “push” and “pull”

factors.

Lack of opportunities

developing

countries

has

pushed

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

of

origin

and

destination.

Labor

migration

has

entrepreneurship, and supported pension schemes in

revitalized workforces, promoted receiving countries. In developing

regions

where

migrants

come

from,

transnational

communities

have

benefited

from

remittance skills4.

flows,

transfer

of

investments,

and

the

exchange

of

technology

and

critical

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.

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