UN Report: Last Decade Saw 16.5 Million Pakistanis Migrate Overseas

Among 10 countries with the estimated net outflow of migrants exceeding 1 million over the period from 2010 through 2021, Pakistan saw 16.5 million migrants move overseas, the highest in the world, according to a report titled "World Population Prospects 2022" released by the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UN DESA). 

Pakistani Workers' Overseas Migration Data (2010-2021). Source: Bureau of Emigration

In many of these countries with more than one million people leaving, the outflows were due to temporary labor movements, such as for Pakistan (net outflow of 16.5 million), India (3.5 million), Bangladesh, (2.9 million), Nepal (1.6 million) and Sri Lanka (1.0 million).  The report also said that India's population will surpass China's in 2023. Over half of the global population increase up to 2050 will be in just 8 countries: Democratic Republic of Congo, Egypt, Ethiopia, India, Nigeria, Pakistan, the Philippines & Tanzania.

Population Sizes of China, India and Pakistan 1950-2099. Source: Our World in Data

The figure of 16.5 million migrants outflow from Pakistan is much higher than the numbers reported by the Bureau of Emigration & Overseas Employment of the Government of Pakistan. A possible source of discrepancy is the uncounted numbers of the family members who accompany workers going abroad for work.  

Between 2010 and 2021, 40 countries or territories have experienced a net inflow of more than 200,000 migrants; in 17 of those, the total net inflow exceeded 1 million people. In 2020, Turkey hosted the largest number of refugees and asylum seekers worldwide (nearly 4 million),followed by Jordan (3 million), the State of Palestine (2 million) and Colombia (1.8 million). Other major destination countries of refugees, asylum seekers or other persons displaced abroad were Germany,  Lebanon, Pakistan, Sudan, Uganda and the United States of America. 

Top Remittance Receiving Countries in 2021. Source: World Bank

Pakistan has received nearly $31 billion in worker remittances in 2021, up a whopping 20% from the prior year, according to the World Bank. This is a new record representing nearly 10% of the country's gross domestic product (GDP). This money helps the nation cope with its perennial current account deficits. It also provides a lifeline for millions of Pakistani families who use the money to pay for food, education, healthcare and housing. This results in an increase in stimulus spending that has a multiplier effect in terms of employment in service industries ranging from retail sales to restaurants and entertainment. 

Remittances from the European Union (EU) to Pakistan soared 49.7% in FY 21 and 28.3% in FY22, according to the State Bank of Pakistan. With $2.5 billion remittances in the first 9 months (July-March) of the current fiscal year, the EU ($2.5 billion) has now surpassed North America ($2.2 billion) to become the third largest source of inflows to Pakistan after the Middle East and the United Kingdom. Remittances from the US have grown 21%, second fastest after the EU (28.3%) in the first 9  months of the current fiscal year. 

Pakistan's share of the working age population (15-64 years) is growing as the country's birth rate declines, a phenomenon called demographic dividend. This dividend is manifesting itself in high levels of worker exports and record remittances pouring into the country. Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates(UAE) are the top two sources of remittances but the biggest increase (58%) in remittances is seen this year from Pakistanis in the next two sources: the United Kingdom and the United States. 

Over 10 million Pakistanis are currently working/living overseas, according to the Bureau of Emigration. Before the COVID19 pandemic hit in 2020,  more than 600,000 Pakistanis left the country to work overseas in 2019. The average yearly outflow of Pakistani workers to OECD countries (mainly UK and US) and the Middle East has been over half a million in the last decade. 

Pakistan ranks 6th among the top worker remittance recipient countries in the world.  India and China rank first and second, followed by Mexico 3rd, the Philippines 4th, Egypt 5th and Pakistan 6th.  

Pakistan Demographics

About two million Pakistanis are entering the workforce every year. The share of the working age population in Pakistan is increasing while the birth rate is declining. This phenomenon, known as demographic dividend, is coinciding with declines in working age populations in developed countries. It is creating an opportunity for over half a million Pakistani workers to migrate and work overseas, and send home record remittances. 

Projected Population Decline in Emerging Economies. Source: Nikkei Asia

common myth about emigration is that it is driven by poverty. But the fact is that the poorest and least developed people tend to stay put where they are; they do not migrate. It's only people who have a certain level of income and skills who are more likely to migrate to other countries for better opportunities. This fact has been well-established by multiple studies conducted in Africa.

Here's an except of African Development Bank report on migration:

"Results show that despite increase in the absolute number of migrants, Africa, particularly SubSaharan Africa has one of the lowest rate of emigration in the world .... Poorer countries generally have lower rate of emigration ......Bad socio-economic conditions generally seem to lead to higher rate of emigration by highly skilled individuals. Generally, migration is driven by motives to improve livelihoods with notable evidence on changes in labor market status. Often, self-employed or unemployed émigré ended up in wage employment. The paper outlines policy issues emerging from the migration trend in Africa."

Migration vs Human Development Source: Hein de Haas











Data shows that increased human and economic development is initially associated with increasing emigration. Any form of development in the poorest countries of the world is therefore likely to lead to accelerating emigration. Such findings contradict conventional thinking and force us to radically change our views on migration. Such rethinking can be achieved by learning to see migration as an intrinsic part of broader development processes rather than as a problem to be solved, or the temporary response to development “disequilibria”, according to The Conversation, a US publication.

Comments

Riaz Haq said…

Arif Habib Limited
@ArifHabibLtd
Highest ever remittances during FY22

Jun’22: $2.8bn, +2% YoY, +18% MoM
FY22: $ 31.2bn, +6% YoY

https://twitter.com/ArifHabibLtd/status/1548885472851726336?s=20&t=gpIdgi1_4lPDmRp00u6aiA
Riaz Haq said…
US tops UAE in remittances to India: RBI paper

https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/economy/policy/us-tops-uae-in-remittances-to-india-rbi-paper/articleshow/92964862.cms

Remittances from the Indian diaspora in the US surged through the Covid months that saw a contraction in inflows from the traditional Gulf stronghold as jobs, contact-intensive and outdoor-oriented, were lost in West Asia through the initial shutdowns.

Research by central bank economists showed that the US surpassed the UAE as the top source country, accounting for 23% of total remittances in 2020-21. "This corroborates with the World Bank report (2021) citing an economic recovery.

"A lot of the remittance flow has got to do with the jobs and economic conditions in the host countries," said Madan Sabnavis, chief economist at Bank of Baroda NSE 3.80 %. "Remittances from the Gulf region were almost nil because of the slowdown and many had to face job losses. But in the US where most Indians are employed in IT and other white-collar jobs, the employment situation was more stable during the pandemic restrictions.

As the top recipient, India was expected to be one of the worst affected - with a projected decline of 23% - as the host country basket of the diaspora was vulnerable to the twin effects of economic slowdown and slump in oil prices. Defying the early projections, however, India remained the top recipient, accounting for 12% of total global remittances, recording a marginal decline of 0.2% in 2020 and a growth of 8% in 2021.
Riaz Haq said…
In 2021, over 160,000 #Indians renounced citizenship, highest in past 5 years. 78,000 took #US citizenship. #Australia 23,533, #Canada 21,597, #UK 14,637, #Italy 5,986, #Netherlands 2187, #NewZealand 2643, #Singapore 2516, #Pakistan 41 and #Nepal 10. #Modi https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/in-2021-over-16-lakh-indians-renounced-citizenship/article65658065.ece

The number is the highest in the past five years, U.S. being the country whose citizenship is most sought after
Over 1.6 lakh Indians renounced their citizenship in 2021, highest in the past five years, according to information provided by the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) in the Lok Sabha on Tuesday. Over 78,000 Indians acquired U.S. citizenship, the highest among all other countries, by giving up Indian citizenship. India does not allow dual citizenship. As many as 362 Indians living in China also acquired Chinese citizenship.

Minister of State for Home Nityanand Rai, responding to a question by Fazlur Rehman, said in a written reply that “individuals renounced Indian citizenship for reasons personal to them.”

In 2018, MHA revised Form XXII under Citizenship Rules and included a column on “circumstances/reasons due to which applicant intends to acquire foreign citizenship and renounce Indian citizenship.”

The reply stated that the number of Indians living in Australia who relinquished their citizenship stood at 23,533, Canada- 21,597, U.K.-14,637, Italy-5,986, Netherlands- 2187, New Zealand- 2643, Singapore- 2516, U.S.A.- 78284, Pakistan-41 and Nepal-10.

A reply furnished by the ministry in 2021 said that the number of Indians who gave up citizenship in the years 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020 stood at 1,33,049, 1,34,561, 1,44,017 and 85,248 respectively.
Riaz Haq said…
Big jump in numbers of Indians crossing into US from Canada and Mexico illegally.

https://www.financialexpress.com/defence/more-indians-trying-to-enter-the-us-illegally-via-south-america-and-canada/2538682/

The total number of undocumented Indian migrants apprehended at Southwest Land (US-Mexico) border by US Border Patrol (USBP) and Office of Field Operations (OFO) in 2022 FYTD (Oct 2021 to Apr 2022) were 8119 Indian, in 2021 (Oct 2020 till Sep 2021) were 2588, 2020 (Oct 2019 till Sep 2020) were 1120.

In 2022, undocumented Indian migrants surprisingly increased, numbers of undocumented Indian migrants in three months are equal to the number of undocumented Indian migrants in 2021 (October 2020 to September 2021) which is 2588.

On the US Northern Land (US-Canada) Border, the total number of undocumented Indian migrants apprehend at Northern Land Border by US Border Patrol (USBP) and Office of Field Operations (OFO) in 2022 FYTD (Oct 2021 to Apr 2022) were 5700 Indians, where in 2021 (Oct 2020 till Sep 2021) were 2225, 2020 (Oct 2019 till Sep 2020) were 3128.

Riaz Haq said…
Pakistan’s Economy Is In Deep Crisis, Tweets Economist Atif Mian

https://www.thefridaytimes.com/2022/07/21/pakistans-economy-is-in-deep-crisis-tweets-economist-atif-mian/

In a series of tweets, Pakistan-born economist Atif Mian analyses how the Pakistani rupee has lost 20% of its value and that the key issue will be “rationing”, in the short run.

Atif said that the rupee has lost 20 per cent of its value in the last three months while the current account is currently negative.

“Pakistan has left itself almost completely at the mercy of foreign assistance – this is the real sin of its political elite. Energy is mostly imported, medicine are mostly imported, and even in food unfortunately, Pakistan is no longer self-sufficient,” he said.

He added that when oil prices were going higher, Pakistan was selling some of the cheapest oil in the world domestically. “PTI government reduced price domestically and started to subsidise it. How can Pakistan pay for it?”

He said that the toughest challenge Pakistan faces is bringing back some modicum of credibility with investors and its own people.

“The powerful are knee deep in unproductive, rent-seeking sectors like real estate and sugar. That must change. The taxation and incentive structure must favour productive activities over unproductive ones and open up the economy to women,” he further said.

Earlier, the rupee continued its fall in the interbank market, closing at a historic low of Rs225 against the US dollar.

According to the SBP, the rupee closed at Rs224.92 against the dollar, down Rs2.93, from yesterday’s close of Rs221.99.

Commenting on the rupee fall, Finance Minister Miftah Ismail said: “The panic in the market is primarily due to political turmoil, which will subside in a few days.”

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Atif Mian
@AtifRMian
Pakistan's economy is in deep crisis

a long 🧵

https://twitter.com/AtifRMian/status/1549782314829357056?s=20&t=FcKOMbksCi06Zn2jC15URA

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Atif Mian
@AtifRMian
The spread on $ debt (16%+) is in range where the number only matters for speculators now, the country is effectively shut off from private capital markets

Rupee has lost 20% of its value in 3 months, while current account remains negative and $ rollovers coming due

https://twitter.com/AtifRMian/status/1549783359764791297?s=20&t=FcKOMbksCi06Zn2jC15URA
Riaz Haq said…
The Japanese Ambassador to Pakistan Kuninori Matsuda told journalists last Friday that Japan would add Pakistan to the list of nine other world countries eligible to apply for Japan employment visas.

While the employment scheme was initially announced for 9 countries – Myanmar, Thailand, Vietnam, Indonesia, Mongolia, Nepal, the Philippines, Cambodia, and China – Pakistan may soon become the 10 country part of the list.

According to Ambassador Matsuda, Japan is about to open the working visas for skilled workers from Pakistan, in a bid to tackle the aging and shrinking population of the country.

https://visaguide.world/news/japan/japan-to-offer-work-visas-to-skilled-pakistanis/

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Japan will make it easier to bring in talented foreign workers to regions outside the metropolitan areas by offering a fast-track path to permanent residency.

The government will revise a point system that grades individuals based on annual income, educational backgrounds and job experience. Those with high scores receive preferential treatment.

Now the government will add points for working at companies promoted by local communities. The government had rolled out the program on a trial basis in Hiroshima Prefecture and Kitakyushu and will now expand it nationwide.

The aim is to attract such specialists as researchers, engineers and business managers. Many companies in rural areas are facing a need for transformation in response to digitalization and decarbonization. In Hiroshima Prefecture, for example, semiconductor developers are trying to invite engineers.

An applicant whose point total reaches 70 will qualify for "highly specialized profession" status, and the period of stay in Japan required to obtain permanent residence will be shortened to three years from 10. At 80 points, only one year will be required. Parents and domestic servants will be allowed to come along, and spouses will be permitted to work.

Working in a local company will be worth 10 points and treated the same as having annual income of 10 million yen or more as a manager.

The number of workers certified as highly specialized reached 31,451 at the end of 2021. The number continue to rise despite the pandemic. By nationality, Chinese accounted for approximately 70% as of the end of 2020, followed by Indians at 6% and Americans at 5%.

Currently, daily arrivals are capped at 20,000 in response to COVID-19. The government is trying to lay the groundwork for stepped-up recruitment of foreign nationals in a post-coronavirus era.

It will also try to find smaller local companies seeking foreign talent with the help of the Japan External Trade Organization. In fiscal 2021, JETRO helped companies hire 180 people.

https://asia.nikkei.com/Spotlight/Japan-immigration/Japan-s-small-cities-to-draw-foreign-talent-with-fast-track-residency
Riaz Haq said…
According to a report of by the London-based global citizenship and residence advisory Henley & Partners (H&P), around 8,000 High Networth Individuals or HNIs will leave India this year. And this is the exodus of the rich and educated.

https://theprint.in/opinion/rich-indians-turn-secessionist-giving-up-citizenship-nationalism-poor-mans-burden-2/1049376/

When the Modi government decided to crack down on black money and tax evaders, many Indians had applied this trick — let family members remain abroad for 182 or more days. This, by rule, made them “non-residents” with foreign accounts and businesses, which could be used by family members to stash money.

Affirmative action policies in India are also blamed for the exodus of Indians and that gives a hint that which social group is mostly migrating. The Economist has written in one of its commentaries that the Brahmins are forced to leave the country because of affirmative-action policies in India. Though this argument doesn’t hold good because affirmative action is only for the government jobs, which constitutes a miniscule percentage of the entire job market. In high-paying jobs, that percentage is further reduced.

My explanation for this exodus from the status of being an Indian citizen is twofold. One, successful Indians already have strong secessionist tendencies and two, they leave because only such people have means to leave.

If we check the urban elite spaces, we can easily see those secessionist tendencies of the rich. Their colonies or apartments have their own security systems, reverse osmosis water supply, private power generator sets, and even private recreational spaces. These colonies, in a way, function as separate micro nations. Their interaction with the State is manifested only when some crime or calamity happens. Most of these colonies are gated communities and RWAs are like a government there. In many metropolitan towns, RWAs in elite colonies erect gates at public roads and limit access to public parks and other government facilities.

In this case, there is a class in India that has actually become “independent” or “autonomous.” This class almost never uses government hospitals or educational facilities. It’s a big problem that they have to breathe the same air, but air purifiers have solved this problem also. Covid-19 proved to be a leveller when the elites were forced to share these spaces with the underclass, but that is one of exceptions. Under normal circumstances, there is a separate private infrastructure to cater to their requirements. This class goes abroad to spend holidays. This class sends their kids to the schools affiliated to international boards. Global citizenship and global village is not some distant idea or concept for them. There are people in India who live these concepts and migrate at the first opportunity.

Being part of this group is not at all bad. The fact is that the underclass aspires to enter these spaces not as trespassers but as legitimate members. Rich people are their role models. I am of the view that this aspiration is good and brings hope. ‘Satisfaction’ or ‘contentment’ is the word I hate. Only problem is that the Nahruvian Model of socialism never facilitated such transitions for the masses. Because of the extremely slow growth of the Indian economy in the formative decades of the nation, socialism became a model to distribute poverty. There was, in fact, not much to trickle down. The entrepreneurial potential of the nation was curbed.

Majumdar said…
Brof sahab:

1. 16.5 million Pakistanis emigrated in the last decade as against 3.5 million Indians while there are 6 times as many Indians as Pakistanis
2. Emigration is a sign that people are aspirational and skilled

If that is the case, we must welcome richer Indians emigrating as a positive side, no?

Riaz Haq said…
Majumdar: "Emigration is a sign that people are aspirational and skilled. If that is the case, we must welcome richer Indians emigrating as a positive side, no?"


Rich people migrating from a lower middle income country signifies flight of capital.

Lower & upper middle class workers migrating from a lower middle income country is aspirational.
Riaz Haq said…
Remittances Are a Lifeline for Developing Countries With Economic Instability

https://thefintechtimes.com/remittances-are-a-lifeline-for-developing-countries-with-economic-instability/

Remittances sent worldwide have increased 64.3 per cent in the past decade, rising from $420.1billion 10 years’ ago to $653.4billion in the last year, shows research by ACE Money Transfer, the online remittance provider.
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Global economic growth is expected to slump from 6.1 per cent last year to 3.2 per cent this year — significantly lower than the 4.1 per cent anticipated in January. This is due to rising interest rates and spiralling inflation. This slowdown in growth is expected to hit low-income countries harder.

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Remittances also play a key role in urban areas, helping drive investment into real estate and infrastructure in developing countries.

Rashid Ashraf, CEO of ACE Money Transfer, says, “Remittances have a massive impact on people’s lives across the world. When times are tough and economies are struggling, this is when remittances are particularly important.

“Around three-quarters of remittances sent globally are used to cover essential things, like putting food on the family’s table and covering medical expenses, school fees or housing expenses. In addition, in times of crises, migrant workers tend to send more money home to cover loss of crops or family emergencies.”

Countries facing significant economic stress at present include Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Nigeria and Nepal. Remittances play a key role in supporting the economies of all mentioned countries.

Remittances key to helping Sri Lanka and Nepal’s struggling economies
Sri Lanka in particular has struggled following the pandemic, with its economy having collapsed. The country has been short of cash to pay for vital food and fuel imports and has defaulted on its debt.

Remittances are a key pillar of Sri Lanka’s economy, reaching $7.1billion in the past year, up from $6.7billion the previous year. Remittances in Sri Lanka support economic growth, reduce the burden on social security payments and help alleviate poverty. Increases in remittances could significantly aid Sri Lanka’s economic recovery.

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How remittances can help moderate inflation in Pakistan and Nigeria
Pakistan and Nigeria are two other countries facing economic difficulties where remittances can play a key role in their recoveries. Both countries have been struggling with the effects of surging inflation this year.

Pakistan’s currency has devalued 28 per cent compared to the US dollar so far this year, fuelling surges in the prices of vital imported goods such as fuel, cooking oil and grains.

This has made remittances to Pakistan, which have risen 26 per cent to a record $33billion in the past year, even more important. Remittances are a key source of foreign currency for Pakistan and play a significant role in supporting its currency. This is in turn can help control inflation and the price of essential goods and services in the country.

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The role of remittances in strengthening resilient economies like the Philippines
Remittances can also play an important role in countries where the economy has remained resilient. This includes the Philippines’ economy, which has continued to show rapid expansion this year despite global headwinds.

An important stabilising factor in its economy has been remittances, which have reached a record high of $34.9billion in the past year. Remittances in the Philippines are important in supporting domestic consumer spending, which has driven the country’s economic growth.

Remittances are a crucial source of foreign capital for many developing countries. Unlike other flows of private capital, remittances have remained resilient throughout the pandemic. As economics across the world continue to recover, remittances continue to play a vital role in helping countries build resilience and drive economic growth.
Riaz Haq said…
World #Population Is About to Hit 8 Billion—Some Argue It Is Near Its Peak. Demographers’ forecasts vary and are based on assumptions such as how well-educated and healthy people will be, especially #women. #Africa #heath #education #development #fertility https://www.wsj.com/articles/global-population-is-about-to-hit-8-billionand-some-argue-it-is-near-its-peak-11660252977

But as we cross eight billion people, it is worth considering that the world might never make it to 10 billion, or even nine billion, and that the world’s major demographic problems won’t stem from the growing masses but from shrinking countries, aging populations and dwindling workforces.

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Later this year—any day now really—the global population is projected to cross eight billion people. The United Nations recently pegged the date as Nov. 15, but we don’t know with any exact precision.

Since the 1960s, when the global number of people first hit three billion, it has taken a bit over a decade to cross each new billion-person milestone, and so it might seem natural to assume that nine billion humans and then 10 billion are, inexorably, just around the corner. That is exactly what the latest population projections from the U.N. and the U.S. Census Bureau have calculated.

But as we cross eight billion people, it is worth considering that the world might never make it to 10 billion, or even nine billion, and that the world’s major demographic problems won’t stem from the growing masses but from shrinking countries, aging populations and dwindling workforces.

We aren’t talking about meteor strikes, alien invasions or apocalyptic scenarios (though, of course, that could do it, too) but rather straightforward demographic projections that conclude that birthrates have been falling so rapidly around the world that we could potentially reach the peak of human population in less than a generation.

The U.N.’s projections are the best known. But an alternate set of projections has been gaining attention in recent years, spearheaded by the demographer Wolfgang Lutz, under the auspices of the Wittgenstein Centre for Demography and Global Human Capital at the University of Vienna, of which Mr. Lutz is founding director.

These forecasts project the population peak is closer and lower. A look at the assumptions behind the forecasts shows they are hardly implausible.

“There’s two big questions,” Mr. Lutz explains, that determine whether his forecasts or the U.N.’s end up closer to the mark. “First, how rapidly fertility will decline in Africa…. The other question is China, and countries with very low fertility, if they will recover and how fast they will recover.”

The U.N. projects population using historical trends for each country, and calculating how other countries in similar conditions fared in the past.

Lyman Stone, the director of research for the population consulting firm Demographic Intelligence, compares this methodology to technical analysis in stocks, a method of looking for historical patterns and predicting if they are likely to recur.

The Wittgenstein forecasts, by contrast, look not only at historical patterns, but attempt to ask why birthrates rise and fall. A big factor, not formally included in the U.N.’s models, is education levels. Put simply: As people, especially women, have greater opportunities to pursue education, they have smaller families. (U.N. demographer Vladimíra Kantorová said the U.N.’s approach implicitly accounts for development, urbanization, women’s education and contraceptive use since it relies on historical data from countries that underwent similar transitions.)

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The U.N. projects Africa’s population will grow from 1.3 billion today to 3.9 billion by century’s end.

Once education is accounted for, Wittgenstein’s baseline scenario projects Africa’s population will rise to 2.9 billion during that time period. In another scenario from Wittgenstein, which it calls the “rapid development” scenario, the population of Africa will only reach 1.7 billion by century’s end.

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