Nearly 700,000 Pakistani Workers Have Migrated Overseas So Far in Year 2022

Nearly 700,000 Pakistanis have left to work overseas in the first 10 months of the current calendar year, according to Pakistan's Bureau of Emigration Overseas Employment (BEOE). The worker migration from Pakistan had dipped to 225,000 in 2020 and 280,000 in 2021 due to Covid restrictions around the world. The yearly average for the last decade was over half a million Pakistanis migrating to other countries for work.  In August this year, the State Bank of Pakistan said in its "Half Year Report 2021-22" that “(t)he monthly flow of Pakistani workers (overseas) has reverted to pre-Covid levels (of 65,000 per month).” The data from International Organization for Migration (IOM) shows that a lot more of the Pakistan migrants are now skilled labor while the share of unskilled migrants is declining: "Pakistani migrant workers were skilled (42%) and involved in semi-skilled jobs such as welders, secretaries, masons, carpenters, plumbers and so on. Another proportion of the labour migration was composed of unskilled laborers (39%) such as agriculturists, laborers or farmers. Projections about future trends indicate that the number of Pakistani labour migrants will continue rising to reach 15.5 million in 2020 (Government of Pakistan, 2018". Larger and increasingly higher skilled diaspora is expected to sustain double-digit annual growth in overseas worker remittances to Pakistan. 

Pakistani Workers Going Overseas. Source: Bureau of Emigration

Demographic Dividend: 

With rapidly aging populations and declining number of working age people in North America, Europe and East Asia, the demand for workers will increasingly be met by major labor exporting nations like Bangladesh, China, India, Mexico, Pakistan, Russia and Vietnam. Among these nations, Pakistan is the only major labor exporting country where the working age population is still rising faster than the birth rate. 

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. Nearly 700,000 Pakistanis have already migrated in this calendar year as of October, 2022. The average yearly outflow of Pakistani workers to OECD countries (mainly UK and US) and the Middle East was over half a million in the last decade. 

Consumer Markets in 2030. Source: WEF

World's 7th Largest Consumer Market:

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. With its rising population of this working age group, Pakistan is projected by the World Economic Forum to become the world's 7th largest consumer market by 2030. Nearly 60 million Pakistanis will join the consumer class (consumers spending more than $11 per day) to raise the country's consumer market rank from 15 to 7  by 2030. WEF forecasts the world's top 10 consumer markets of 2030 to be as follows: China, India, the United States, Indonesia, Russia, Brazil, Pakistan, Japan, Egypt and Mexico.  Global investors chasing bigger returns will almost certainly shift more of their attention and money to the biggest movers among the top 10 consumer markets, including Pakistan.  Already, the year 2021 has been a banner year for investments in Pakistani technology startups

Record Remittances From Overseas Pakistanis:

Pakistan is already seeing high levels of labor export and record remittances of over $30 billion 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.

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 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. 


Riaz Haq said…
Pakistani migrants in Europe

According to the 2020 International Migrant Stock compiled by UNDESA4, a total of 952,993 Pakistani nationals resided in Europe in 2020. Fifty-eight per cent of them were male and forty-two percent were female. The number of Pakistani nationals in each European country in 2020 is shown in Annex 1, together with gender-disaggregated numbers. UNDESA estimates the number and composition of migrants on the basis of data obtained from population censuses, population registers and national surveys. The dataset provides estimates of the international migrant stock by age, sex and origin for the mid-point (1 July) of each year: 1990, 1995, 2000, 2005, 2010, 2015 and 2020.

European Countries Total Migrants Male Female

Denmark 14,318 7,503 6,815
Estonia 261 195 66
Finland 3,134 2,090 1,044
Iceland 94 69 25
Ireland 10,570 6,667 3,903
Latvia 228 204 24
Lithuania 7 3 4
Norway 21,140 10,853 10,287
Sweden 16,597 9,891 6,706
United Kingdom 537,047 282,645 254,402

Greece 8,823 4,435 4,388
Italy 124,800 89,557 35,243
Malta 549 300 249
Portugal 2,217 1,469 748
Slovenia 42 31 11
Spain 63,819 41,074 22,745

Austria 6,097 4,076 2,021
Belgium 13,246 8,143 5,103
France 27,203 16,341 10,862
Germany 79,227 53,993 25,234
Liechtenstein 7 5 2
Luxembourg 279 169 110
Switzerland 5,381 3,304 2,077
The Netherlands 14,104 8,030 6,074

Bulgaria 290 182 108
Hungary 1,055 780 275
Poland 278 257 21
Romania 625 438 187
Russia 726 579 147
Slovakia 122 110 12
The Czech Republic 662 501 161

Riaz Haq said…
What was Pakistan's Private Consumption Expenditure in 2022?
Pakistan Private Consumption Expenditure was reported at 324.824 USD bn in Dec 2022. This records an increase from the previous number of 290.625 USD bn for Dec 2021. See the table below for more data.

Pakistan Private Consumption Expenditure was reported at 324.824 USD bn in Dec 2022. This records an increase from the previous number of 290.625 USD bn for Dec 2021.
Pakistan Private Consumption Expenditure data is updated yearly, averaging 31.179 USD bn from Dec 1960 to 2022, with 63 observations.
The data reached an all-time high of 324.824 USD bn in 2022 and a record low of 3.084 USD bn in 1960.
Pakistan Private Consumption Expenditure data remains in an active status in CEIC and is reported by CEIC Data.
The data is categorized under World Trend Plus’s Global Economic Monitor – Table: Nominal GDP: Private Consumption Expenditure: USD: Annual: Asia.

CEIC shifts year-end for annual Private Consumption Expenditure and converts it into USD. Private Consumption Expenditure is calculated as the sum of Household and NPISHs consumption. The Pakistan Bureau of Statistics provides Private Consumption Expenditure in local currency based on SNA 2008 with benchmark year 2015-2016. The State Bank of Pakistan average market exchange rate is used for currency conversions. Private Consumption Expenditure is reported in annual frequency, ending in June of each year. Private Consumption Expenditure prior to 2016 is based on SNA 2008 with benchmark year 2005-2006. Private Consumption Expenditure prior to 2000 is sourced from the World Bank.
Riaz Haq said…
World-Topping $100 Billion in Remittances Head to India in 2022
Funds from world’s largest diaspora a key source of cash
Migrants living in wealthy nations boost inflows to the nation


Pakistan, Bangladesh Remittances Drop As Illegal Flows Rise
Flows at an eight-month low in Bangladesh and Pakistan
Higher currency rates on the gray market explain the decline

Remittances to two of South Asia’s largest countries dropped to their lowest level in eight months, with migrant workers finding it more profitable to send money through illegal non-banking channels.

Pakistan’s remittances fell to $2.2 billion and Bangladesh’s to $1.5 billion in October, according to central bank data. Currency rates on the gray market, also known as hawala, are higher than official exchange rates for both countries.
Riaz Haq said…
The report said, as always, India will be at the top of expatriate income. A record 100 billion US dollar remittance will come to that country this year. Next on the list are- Mexico ($60 billion), China ($51 billion), Philippines ($38 billion), Egypt ($32 billion) and Pakistan ($29 billion).

The Brief said remittances to South Asia grew an estimated 3.5 percent to $163 billion in 2022, but there is large disparity across countries, from India's projected 12 percent gain-which is on track to reach $100 billion in receipts for the year--to Nepal's 4 percent increase, to an aggregate decline of 10 percent for the region's remaining countries.

The report showed that the remittance flow in Bangladesh was downward in the last 8 months.


World Bank Expects Pakistan’s Remittances to Decline by Over 7%

Remittances in Pakistan are expected to drop by 7.4 percent to $29 billion in 2022 from $31 billion in 2021, says the World Bank.

The Bank in its latest report “Remittances Brave Global Headwinds Special Focus: Climate Migration”, noted that while remittances exceeded pre-pandemic levels they fell compared to 2021, exacerbating a balance of payments crisis.


Remittances to low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) withstood global headwinds in 2022, growing an estimated 5% to $626 billion. This is sharply lower than the 10.2% increase in 2021, according to the latest World Bank Migration and Development Brief.
Riaz Haq said…
Pakistan ranks 16th in terms of international students studying in the United States.

There are 8,772 Pakistanis studying in the United States in 2021/22, up 17% from the prior year when COVID restrictions reduced international travel.


There has been a 17 percent year-on-year increase in the number of Pakistani students in the United States during 2021-22, says an official US report.

The report, released in Washington this week, notes that the United States remains the top destination for international students and the number of students from Bangladesh, Nepal, India, and Pakistan is on the rise!

In South Asia, Bangladesh topped the list with a 23 per cent year-over-year increase, followed by India with a 19pc increase.

Pakistan also has the largest US-funded Fulbright programme in the world, which sends 150 Pakistanis each year to US universities — 100 to earn their master’s degrees and 50 to earn PhDs.

The United States also sponsors 800 Pakistanis each year to travel on exchange programs — from high school students who spend a year at a US high school to professionals who connect with their American counterparts. As a result, Pakistan is home to the largest network of alumni of US government-funded exchange programmes in the world.

The “Open Doors Report on International Educational Exchange,” published this week, identified China and India as the largest sources of international students to the United States. During the current academic year, China sent 290,086 students, which is 30.6pc of the total number of international students in the US. Yet, it is a decline of 8.6pc, compared to the previous academic year. India, which sent 199,183 students this year — 21 percent of the total — registered a 19pc year-over-year increase. Toge­ther, China and India represent the majority (almost 52pc) of all international students in the United States.

This year’s report shows a 91pc decline in the total number of US students who studied abroad during the 2020-2021 academic year. This is apparently because since the Covid-19 pandemic, 62pc of US colleges offer virtual internships.

While the pandemic also caused a 45.6pc decline in new international students in 2020, the latest data, covering the 2021-2022 academic year, indicates that the total number of international students in the US — 948,519 — has started to recover.

This can be seen in a 3.8pc increase over the 914,095 international students in the US in 2020. Still, the number is well below the nearly 1.1 million international students reported in 2018.

Much of the recent growth is driven by an increase in the number of new international students — 261,961 – which is up 80pc over the 145,528 from 2020 but still 2.14pc below the 267,712 from 2019. Over the past decade, US colleges enrolled more students from China than from any other country. The onset of the global pandemic effectively halted travel between China and the US and political tensions further exacerbated the situation. Now, many Chinese parents feel their children are safe in the US.

The increase in Indian students is also attributed to the Biden administration’s policy of prioritising the student-visa processing in India. This includes adding more staff at US missions in India and streamlining the process, Chinese visa approvals are trending lower than in past years.
Riaz Haq said…
Here’s Goldman Sachs' Take on World Economy Through 2075

Goldman Sachs analysts said slower population growth will present “a number of economic challenges,” such as how nations will pay for rising health costs of their aging populations.

Goldman Sachs Group Inc. economists have taken a stab at predicting the path of the world economy through 2075.

Two decades since they famously outlined long-term growth projections for the so-called BRIC economies, the economists, now led by Jan Hatzius, expanded their projections to encompass 104 countries over the next half-century.

The results:

Global growth will average just under 3% a year over the next decade, down from 3.6% in the decade before the financial crisis, and will be on a gradually declining path afterwards, reflecting a slowing of labor force growth.
Emerging markets will continue to converge with industrial nations as China, the U.S., India, Indonesia and Germany top the league table of largest economies when measured in dollars. Nigeria, Pakistan and Egypt could also be among the biggest.
The U.S. is unlikely to repeat its relative strong performance of the last decade, and the dollar’s exceptional robustness will also unwind over the next 10 years.
While income inequality between countries has fallen, it will continue to rise within them.
Economists Kevin Daly and Tadas Gedminas saw protectionism and climate change as risks that are “particularly important” both for growth and the convergence of incomes.


Pakistan projected to be among largest economies in the world by 2075: Goldman Sachs

A research paper published by Goldman Sachs on Tuesday projected Pakistan to be the sixth largest economy in the world by 2075 given “appropriate policies and institutions” are in place.

Authored by economists Kevin Daly and Tadas Gedminas and titled ‘The Path to 2075’, the paper projected that the five largest economies by 2075 will be China, India, the US, Indonesia and Nigeria.

Goldman Sachs has been projecting long-term growth of countries for almost two decades now, initially starting out with BRICs economies, but for the past 10 years they have expanded those projections to cover 70 emerging and developed economies.

Their latest paper covers 104 countries with projections going as far as 2075.
Riaz Haq said…
Pakistan Projected to Become World’s 6th Largest Economy by 2075: Goldman Sachs

Pakistan is projected to become the sixth-largest economy in the world by 2075, according to a research paper published by Goldman Sachs.

‘The Path to 2075’ paper authored by economists Kevin Daly and Tadas Gedminas projects that the five largest economies by 2075 will be China, India, the US, Indonesia, and Nigeria with Pakistan projected to occupy the sixth spot given “appropriate policies and institutions” are in place.

Pakistan’s star future status is predicted on the back of its population growth, which could place it among the largest economies in the world in the next 50 years, according to the paper.

The paper projects that Pakistan’s Real GDP would grow to $12.7 trillion by 2075 with its GDP per capita soaring to $27,100.

The authors have highlighted “environmental catastrophe” and “populist nationalism” as the key risks to their projections.

The paper says that unless a path to sustainable growth is ensured through a globally coordinated response, climate change could heavily skew these projections, particularly for countries like Pakistan.

Moreover, it says that populist nationalists coming to power in many countries might lead to increased protectionism that could potentially result in the reversal of globalization, thereby increasing income inequality across countries.

Other forecasts
Looking out to 2075, the authors caution that world growth, which has already dimmed over the decades, is heading further south.

Much of the slowdown is thanks to a deceleration in population gains. Over the past half-century, the number of people on the plant went from increasing 2 percent a year to less than 1 percent now and is expected to drop to near zero by 2075.

The authors say that the only way to sustain faster economic growth if your population isn’t increasing is to improve productivity. The report highlights that there has been a slowdown in productivity in both emerging markets and developed economies with a weakening in the globalization of trade as a major culprit.
Riaz Haq said…
Exodus from #India in #Modi's 'Aachhe Din': Citizenship renouncements soar. Most #Indians give up their citizenship to obtain the nationality of #US. Over 183,000 have already done so till October 31 this year. #BJP #Hindutva @deccanherald
Riaz Haq said…
During the year 2022 (November), 765,172 Pakistanis proceeded abroad for the purpose of employment.
Riaz Haq said…
Economy of Pakistan
Pakistanis who left Pakistan.
Data by Bureau of Emigration

Thread ๐Ÿงต highlight key points:

People leaving Pakistan by year

2022: 765,000
2021: 225,000
2020: 288,000
2019: 625,876

Previous two years had a slow down due to COVID-19

*2022 details:*
Graduates: 92,000
Trained Workers: 350,000
Drivers: 213,000
Remaining are untrained or no data available.

*Graduates/highly skilled:*
Technicians: 21,517
Associate Engineers: 18,000
Computer Operators: 12,000
Accountants: 6,650
Engineers: 5,534
Doctors: 2500
Computer Scientists: 2000
Teachers: 900

*By Pak region:*
Punjab: 424,000
KP: 240,000
Sindh: 54,000
AJK: 27,000
Balochistan: 7,000
Islamabad: 6,000

*Top countries:*
Saudi Arabia: 470,000
UAE: 119,000
Oman: 77,000
Qatar: 51,634
Malaysia: 5000
Romania: 3160
UK: 2500
Kuwait: 2000
Iraq: 2000
USA: 700
Japan; 815
Spain: 677
China: 602
Germany: 497
Sudan: 478
Italy: 292
Turkey: 136

"Too much dependency on Saudia; we are way behind in the USA, as 100,000 Indians yearly move to USA while 700 Pakistanis go."
Focus needed on relevant skills training (productivity value-addition) and failitation both for ME and the West...

Shared by | Home & Abroad
Data sourced from: Economy of Pakistan @Pakistanomy
Riaz Haq said…
Pakistan becomes first beneficiary of Saudi program for skilled workers

Under verification scheme, Pakistani workers can get contracts directly from Saudi companies without needing sponsor
Saudi envoy says 12 examination centers have been established in eight Pakistani cities to conduct tests of skilled workers
ISLAMABAD: Saudi Arabia on Monday launched a skill verification program in Pakistan, with the South Asia nation becoming the first beneficiary of Riyadh's new scheme for skilled workers.

Under the newly launched program, a dozen examination centers will conduct written and practical tests of skilled workers in Pakistan before they could apply for a Saudi work visa.

Saudi Arabia is home to more than 2.5 million Pakistani expatriates and one of the biggest sources of remittances to Pakistan.

Saad Aiaqil, director-general of the Saudi skill verification program, said Pakistan was the first country to utilize the skilled workers' scheme.

“We have a very strong strategic relationship with Pakistan and have selected it as the first country to start this program,” he told Arab News at the program's launch in Islamabad on Monday.

The initiative is aimed at ensuring skilled workforce comes to the kingdom, Aiaqil said.

“In the first phase we have selected five occupations for the program and these five have further 160 smaller categories for the workers,” he added.

Nawaf bin Said Al-Malki, Saudi Arabia's ambassador to Pakistan, said he was pleased at the launch of the program in Pakistan.

"Twelve examination centers have been established in collaboration with [Pakistan's] National Vocational and Technical Training Commission (NAVTCC) in eight different cities to conduct tests,” the envoy said. “In the first phase of the program, five occupations were selected including electrician, plumbing, welding, refrigeration/air conditioning, and auto electrician.”

The Saudi government was trying to provide best opportunities to Pakistani workers through the new program as the verified workers would be considered "more credible and useful" for Saudi firms, to Al-Malki added.

“There are a lot of projects in the kingdom going on and this is a very good opportunity for the Pakistani labor to get a job in Saudi Arabia,” he said. “This will benefit workers as well because there would be no need of a kafala (sponsor) now and through this program, there would be a direct contract between workers and the company,” he said, referring to the kafala system that generally binds a migrant worker to one employer.

Sajid Hussain Turi, federal minister for overseas Pakistanis, welcomed the Saudi initiative and vowed to provide maximum workers to the kingdom under the program.

“Pakistan welcomes the initiative and we hope it will provide better opportunities to the Pakistani labor market,” he said.

The minister said around 6 million Pakistanis had contributed to Saudi Arabia's development in various fields over the last 50 years and now his ministry would try to provide Pakistani workers with the best training so that they could benefit from the new Saudi scheme.

“Saudi Arabia is starting many mega projects under Vision 2030 like Neom, Taif city project, and development in Makkah, so we hope that a large number of Pakistani workers would be able to get employment there,” the minister said.

In 2020, Saudi Arabia announced new plans to ease foreign workers’ contractual restrictions, abolishing a seven-decade-old sponsorship system known as kafala.

The plans, which took effect in March 2021, aim to make the Saudi labour market more attractive by granting foreign workers the right to change jobs and leave the country without employers’ permission.

Saudi Arabia is seeking to boost its private sector, part of an ambitious plan to diversify its oil-dependent economy. The country's Vision 2030 reform plan is a package of economic and social policies designed to free the kingdom from reliance on oil exports.
Riaz Haq said…
UAE denies reports of #visaban on residents of certain #Pakistani cities.The statement was made by #UAE Consul General in #Karachi Bakheet Ateeq Al Remeithi. Speaking to Geo News, Remeithi said that no such ban has been imposed. #Fakenews #Disinformation

The United Arab Emirates on Monday strongly denied reports of not providing visas to Pakistani citizens belonging to certain cities, terming it as "fake news".

The statement was made by the Consulate General of the UAE Karachi Bakheet Ateeq Al Remeithi. Speaking to Geo News, Remeithi said that no such ban has been imposed by the UAE government.

Reports were being circulated that the gulf country is not allowing visas to some of the Pakistani cities including Abbottabad, Attock, Bajaur Agency, Chakwal, Dera Ghazi Khan, Dera Ismail Khan, Hangu, Hunza, Quetta, Kasur, Kohat, Kotli, Khushab, Khurrum Agency, Larkana, Mohmand Agency, Muzaffargarh, Nawabshah, Parachinar, Sahiwal, Sargodha, Sheikhupura, Skardu and Sukkur.

The poster warned people to not apply if they belong to any of the aforementioned cities.

"Your visa will be rejected and the fee is non-refundable," it added,

While expressing his regret over these reports, Remeithi said that Pakistani citizens can apply to visit or any other UAE visa, adding that they are being provided visas.

He told that apart from the consulates in Islamabad and Lahore, he is personally issuing visas to the citizens born or residing in these cities, from the Karachi consulate.

The consulate general also said that rumours like this are spread from time to time.

FO confirms ‘no ban’ by UAE on visas
The Foreign Office spokesperson confirmed that the UAE had not banned or blacklisted the issuance of visas to Pakistanis belonging to specific cities.

“We have seen the reports. We can confirm that no such ban is in place by UAE for issuance of visas to Pakistani citizens,” Spokesperson Mumtaz Zahra Baloch said.
Riaz Haq said…
During the year 2022 (December), 832,339 Pakistanis proceeded abroad for the purpose of employment.

Since inception of the Bureau in the year 1971, more than 10 million emigrants have been provided overseas employment duly registered with the Bureau of Emigration & Overseas Employment. During the year 2015, highest number of Pakistanis(946,571) proceeded abroad for the purpose of employment. During the year 2022 (December), 832,339 Pakistanis proceeded abroad for the purpose of employment.

Riaz Haq said…
#Japan's #demographic crisis. More retirees, fewer workers. Japan has one of the lowest #birth rates in the world, with the Ministry of #Health predicting it will record fewer than 800,000 births in 2022 for the first time since records began in 1899.

Japan’s prime minister issued a dire warning about the country’s population crisis on Monday, saying it was “on the brink of not being able to maintain social functions” due to the falling birth rate.

In a policy address to lawmakers, Fumio Kishida said it was a case of solving the issue “now or never,” and that it “simply cannot wait any longer.”

“In thinking of the sustainability and inclusiveness of our nation’s economy and society, we place child-rearing support as our most important policy,” the prime minister said.

Kishida added that he wants the government to double its spending on child-related programs, and that a new government agency would be set up in April to focus on the issue.

Japan has one of the lowest birth rates in the world, with the Ministry of Health predicting it will record fewer than 800,000 births in 2022 for the first time since records began in 1899.

The country also has one of the highest life expectancies in the world; in 2020, nearly one in 1,500 people in Japan were age 100 or older, according to government data.

These trends have driven a growing demographic crisis, with a rapidly aging society, a shrinking workforce and not enough young people to fill the gaps in the stagnating economy.

Experts point to several factors behind the low birth rate. The country’s high cost of living, limited space and lack of child care support in cities make it difficult to raise children, meaning fewer couples are having kids. Urban couples are also often far from extended family who could help provide support.

Attitudes toward marriage and starting families have also shifted in recent years, with more couples putting off both during the pandemic.

Some point to the pessimism young people in Japan hold toward the future, many frustrated with work pressure and economic stagnation.

Japan’s economy has stalled since its asset bubble burst in the early 1990s. The country’s GDP growth slowed from 4.9% in 1990 to 0.3% in 2019, according to the World Bank. Meanwhile, the average real annual household income declined from 6.59 million yen ($50,600) in 1995 to 5.64 million yen ($43,300) in 2020, according to 2021 data from the country’s Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare.

The government has launched various initiatives to address the population decline over the past few decades, including new policies to enhance child care services and improve housing facilities for families with children. Some rural towns have even begun paying couples who live there to have children.
Riaz Haq said…
Pakistan brain drain accelerates in latest threat to ailing economy
Experts warn of talent erosion after nearly 1m workers left in 2022

Hundreds of thousands of Pakistanis are leaving for jobs abroad amid the country's financial and security woes -- a brain drain that threatens to further damage the struggling economy.

Figures from the Bureau of Emigration and Overseas Employment show that 832,339 Pakistanis went overseas for work in 2022, the most since 2016 and the third-highest tally on record. Saudi Arabia was the most preferred destination, attracting 514,909.

Ahmad Jamal, an immigration lawyer in Quetta, said the actual number of people leaving is much larger since the data only covers work visas. He said many categories of emigrants are not included, such as those traveling out on permanent residency visas, student visas and family settlement visas.

The dire state of the Pakistani economy offers few reasons to stay. It is on the verge of collapse, with foreign exchange reserves down to $2.9 billion, enough to cover barely three weeks of imports. Inflation hit 27.6% on the year in January. Per capita income stands at $1,658.

Last week, talks with the International Monetary Fund for the revival of a $7 billion Extended Fund Facility -- vital for keeping the country afloat -- ended inconclusively.

Young Pakistanis, who account for the majority of the population, face bleak prospects. Pakistan's National Human Development Report in 2017 said 64% were younger than 30, while 29% were between the ages of 15 and 29.

"From security to the economy there are many repelling factors, which push youngsters like me away from my homeland," said Atiya Khan, a 25-year business development professional who has been living in the United Arab Emirates with her parents for two decades. She said she does not want to go back to Pakistan and is looking for options to settle in the West.

Tania Baloch, a journalist who previously published a magazine called Balochistan Inside in Karachi, emigrated to Canada a couple of years ago. "I left Pakistan because the future of my kids was not secure there," she said.

Such security concerns have only grown recently, with a surge in terrorism. But many worry that the exodus, particularly skilled workers who accounted for about 90,000 of the departures in 2022, will only compound Pakistan's problems.

Yousaf Nazar, a London-based economist formerly with Citigroup, said anecdotal evidence suggests that Pakistan's business graduates do relatively better abroad. "If some of them leave, it makes the capacity issue [in Pakistan's economy] even worse," he told Nikkei.

Young people are not the only ones rushing for the exit.

Multiple immigration experts said people in their 40s and 50s are also trying to move out of the country.

Jamal, the Quetta lawyer who deals with dozens of hopeful migrants on a monthly basis, said many of his customers are middle-aged or older. "It's unbelievable that a rising number of relatively older people are seriously exploring options to move out of Pakistan due to security and economic issues," he said.

Jamal added that most of the people are liquidating their assets or borrowing loans in Pakistan for immigration and leaving with no intention of returning.

"I know people who once settled abroad and then returned to Pakistan to serve their country," he added. "Now they are also doing their best to revive their immigration status and move out of the country again."

Some downplay the issue. A government official dealing with immigration, who requested anonymity because he was not authorized to talk to the media, argued that the issue is being blown out of proportion.

He said that "800,000 moving, out of a 220 million population, barely makes 0.4% and hence it's not as big an issue as the media is making it."

Riaz Haq said…
Indian Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) Report on NRIs (Non-resident Indians) and POIs (Persons of Indian Origin)

POIs: 13.5 million

NRIs: 18.7 million

Total: 32.2 million

Top destinations:

USA 4.5 million

UAE 3.5 million

Malaysia 3 million

Saudi Arabia 2.6 million

Myanmar 2 million

UK 1.8 million

Canada 1.6 million

Sri Lanka 1.6 million

South Africa 1.6 million

Riaz Haq said…
Why are women in #China not having more babies despite gov't incentives? With rapidly #aging and declining #population and slowing #economic growth, China’s leaders are asking #women to have three children again, but it's too late. #economy #fertility

Fewer people might mean slower growth in China, which will be felt by the U.S. and beyond.

“They’ve now become, you know, the center of the global manufacturing superhighway and are typically the largest contributor to growth every year,” said Scott Kennedy with the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington D.C.

Chinese officials often credit the so-called one-child policy for preventing over 400 million births, but some analysts say China’s population would have declined regardless.

“It’s just simply a rule across all countries, that as you urbanize, and as you get a more educated female population that enters the workforce, fertility numbers fall,” Kennedy said.


The number of Chinese workers is already declining; according to the World Bank, in 2001, China had 10 workers to support one retiree.

“In 2020, that was down to five working folks for each retiree and by 2050 it’ll be down to two,” Kennedy said.

He believes China still has time to offset the effects of population decline, including by boosting productivity, increasing the retirement age and lifting restrictions on people from rural areas to freely settle in cities with their families.

“I don’t think the problem has become so severe that demography is destiny, and China is destined to radically slow down and its chances of becoming an economic superpower breaking out of the middle income trap have been dashed,” Kennedy said.

“[But] these are pretty significant challenges.”


28-year-old Joy Yu’s parents each had three siblings. As they were growing up in the 1970s, the Chinese government started to limit the number of babies born.

Government statistics show on average a woman in China went from having about three babies in the late 1970s to just one.

Four decades on, China’s leaders are asking women to have three children again, which doesn’t sit well for Yu, an only child.

“For me to give birth to three children, my future husband must be rich enough to make sure I can live well without a job. This is a big challenge,” Yu said.

Last year, China’s population dropped for the first time in six decades by 850,000. That still leaves the country with 1.41 billion people but if the decline continues, there will be multiple impacts on the economy.

China began enforcing birth limits in the late 1970s when the country was poor and there were too many mouths to feed.

In a Chinese propaganda film called the Disturbance of Gan Quan Village, the birth restrictions were justified on economic grounds.

“We should put our energy into getting rich rather than keep having children,” says one woman in the film.

She’s sitting among a group of women picking corn kernels off the cob. “Aren’t we getting poorer with each child we have,” she says. The rest of the group nods in agreement.

Chinese leaders enforced, sometimes brutally, the so-called one-child policy in 1979, just as the country was coming out of the tumultuous Cultural Revolution.

“The post-[Chairman] Mao leadership thought that economic development would be the new basis for the party’s political legitimacy and based on pseudo-scientific and demographic projections, limiting birth to one child per married heterosexual couple,” said Yun Zhou, an assistant professor of sociology at the University of Michigan.

There were exceptions. Some ethnic minority groups could have up to three children. People from rural areas could try for a second child if their first-born was not a boy. Later, if both parents had no siblings they could have two children. Starting in 2016, China raised the birth limit for everyone to two children, but there was no sustained baby bump.
Riaz Haq said…
The World’s Biggest Diasporas [Infographic]
Katharina Buchholz

I am a Statista data journalist using charts to explain news topics.

The list of countries with the biggest share of the native-born population living in the diaspora reveals stories of war and displacement but also of economic stagnation and a lack of perspectives. While there are many reasons why someone might leave the place where they were born, small countries are most often affected by the phenomenon as they are inherently at a disadvantage when offering opportunities and chances to move within the country first.

In regions where small countries are common and remoteness is added as another factor, for example in the Caribbean or Oceania, living in the diaspora is the most widespread. Out of all sovereign countries with at least 750,000 inhabitants, Caribbean nation Guyana had the biggest share of its native-born population—36.4%—living abroad. Jamaica comes fifth at 28.6%. Taking into account independent countries of all sizes, island nations dominate the top ranks with up to half of their populations having settled in other countries. Polynesia was the region with the highest overall diaspora share in 2020, at 28.7%, followed by the Caribbean at 17.7%.
Riaz Haq said…
Remittances Sent By Pakistani Expats Reach $2.5 Billion In March: Central Bank
Pakistan and the IMF have been negotiating the programme's resumption for months but have yet to reach an agreement

Pakistani expatriates sent home $2.5 billion in remittances in March, a seven-month high, the State Bank of Pakistan said on Monday, as the cash-strapped country tried to avert a major economic crisis. The data from the central bank showed that the inflow of workers’ remittances was 27 per cent higher compared to February. However, it was 11 per cent lower compared to March 2022, Geo News reported.

Pakistan, currently tackling a major economic crisis, is grappling with high external debt, a weak local currency and dwindling foreign exchange reserves. According to the report, historical trends suggest that Pakistanis living abroad sent record-high remittances ahead of Eid festivals each year.

According to the report, inflows remained comparatively high as non-resident Pakistanis used legal channels to send funds to their family, given the shrinking gap between rates in the interbank and the open market. Pakistani expatriates in Saudi Arabia topped the list of remittances by sending an amount of $563.9 million in March. However, it was 24.04 per cent lower than the $454.6 million received in February, the report said.

Pakistanis living in the UAE sent home 25.52 per cent more as receipts increased from $406.7 million to $324 million. Remittances from overseas Pakistanis in the UK increased 33.12 per cent to $422 million, the report said, adding that they sent $317 million in February. Head of Research at Arif Habib Limited, Tahir Abbas, said that the monthly increase in the remittances is due to the Ramzan factor that usually fetches higher flows due to family commitments, welfare, and charity, among other things.

"The flows in the upcoming months are expected to remain elevated due to another Eid falling by the end of this fiscal year," Abbas was quoted as saying in the report. Terming the increase a “good omen”, Head of Research at Pakistan-Kuwait Investment Company, Samiullah Tariq, said, “Remittances number is highest for past seven months; however, this year Ramzan has started earlier which is why remittance inflow increased earlier than last year,” the report said.

According to a prominent US-based think tank, the United States Institute of Peace, Pakistan needs to repay a whopping $77.5 billion in external debt from April 2023 to June 2026. It added that the cash-strapped country might face disruptive effects if it ultimately defaults. Pakistan is awaiting a much-needed $1.1 billion tranche of funding from the Washington-based International Monetary Fund, originally due to be disbursed in November last year.

The funds are part of a $6.5 billion bailout package the IMF approved in 2019, which analysts say is critical if Pakistan is to avoid defaulting on external debt obligations. The IMF programme, signed in 2019, will expire on June 30, 2023, and under the set guidelines, the programme cannot be extended beyond the deadline. Pakistan and the IMF have been negotiating the programme's resumption for months but have yet to reach an agreement.
Riaz Haq said…
UK Adds 226 New Visa Categories to Urgently Hire Skilled Workers

Exciting opportunities have emerged for Pakistani youth seeking employment abroad as the United Kingdom opens its doors to skilled workers from around the world, including Pakistan.

In response to the severe manpower shortage currently faced by Britain, the country has introduced a significant expansion in its immigration policies.

According to official reports, a total of 226 new immigration categories have been established, accompanied by a noteworthy increase in the minimum wage across all job categories.

This development marks the first time that professions such as police officers, journalists, judges, secret officers, barristers, lawyers, and flight pilots have been included in the immigration category. Furthermore, an additional 31 categories have been designated, encompassing diverse fields such as musicians, dancers, doctors, actors, and scientists.

The expanded opportunities extend beyond specific professions, as drivers, instructors, railway station assistants, air hostesses, cabin crew, veterinary doctors, and tailors are now eligible to pursue employment in the UK. Moreover, individuals with expertise in areas such as masonry, aircraft engineering, AC/fridge engineering, welding, charity work, and estate agency will also find potential avenues for relocation.

Students pursuing education in the UK can now benefit from the post-study work facility, which allows them to gain valuable work experience following the completion of their studies. Notably, highly-educated professionals can anticipate a substantial 20 percent increase in their remuneration, as highlighted in the official letter.

To facilitate the approved manpower shortage category, the UK government has taken steps to keep visa fees at a reasonable level, ensuring accessibility for individuals seeking employment opportunities in the country.

These progressive changes in the UK’s immigration policies provide an encouraging prospect for skilled workers from Pakistan and around the world. The reduced visa fees and the inclusion of a diverse range of professions reflect the British government’s commitment to addressing the pressing shortage of manpower while simultaneously welcoming talented individuals to contribute to the country’s workforce.

Aspiring professionals from Pakistan are encouraged to explore these newfound possibilities, which not only promise career growth but also cultural exchange and personal development. The opportunities available in the UK cater to a wide spectrum of skills and talents, fostering an environment where individuals can thrive and make significant contributions to their chosen fields.

With these favorable policy revisions, Pakistanis can now embark on a transformative journey, utilizing their expertise to build successful careers and establish meaningful connections in the United Kingdom.
Riaz Haq said…
Riaz Haq
2021 was impacted by #Covid restrictions! Hence the low number for #Pakistan !! All middle income developing countries are now experiencing “brain drain” as the young middle class has the resources to travel for better available opportunities overseas.


Pakistan's brain drain crisis escalates as thousands leave

By Zoya Nazir in Islamabad | Darko Janjevic

Many educated Pakistanis are looking to move abroad as living costs continue to climb and political unrest deepens in their home country.

Sana Hashim, who works at a digital marketing startup in Islamabad, is facing a dilemma: She wants to join thousands of highly qualified workers who have already moved out of Pakistan, but is worried about abandoning her family.

"I have applied to a few firms in the Middle East and received interview calls, too," the 29-year-old told DW. "But, even if I get a job, I can't just pack my bags and leave. Who is going to look after my aging parents?"

In 2021, about 225,000 Pakistanis left the country, but the number nearly tripled to 765,000 last year, according to the official numbers published by The Express Tribune daily.

The 2022 numbers include 92,000 of highly educated professionals such as doctors, engineers, information technology experts and accountants. Some of them go to the West, others to Middle Eastern countries such Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.

And the trend shows no sign of abating in 2023. The latest data indicate that nearly 200,000 people left in the first three months of the year. Nasir Khan, an experienced immigration agent working in Islamabad, told DW that he has never seen such a surge before.

"It's not just the younger lot — people of all ages turn up to my office daily," he said. "They are so tired and frustrated; it literally seems they want to run away from here."

Salaries eaten by galloping inflation
IT specialist Nouman Shah told DW that he took the plunge and moved to Saudi Arabia last year because of the rising living costs in Pakistan.

"My low earnings were inadequate to run a household there, while a job prospect in Riyadh was too good to pass up," he said.

For years, people in Pakistan have had to contend with joblessness, low wages and limited prospects to advance their careers. Now, the country is also facing a deep political and economic crisis. In addition to the power struggle between the supporters of former Prime Minister Imran Khan and the current government led by Prime Minister Shahbaz Sharif — a struggle that has repeatedly turned violent — the value of the Pakistani rupee has been plummeting, and the government is struggling to secure a loan from the International Monetary Fund. The cost of imports such as crude oil has also skyrocketed, stoking inflation.

According to JS Global Securities, inflation in the country is projected to reach over 37% year-on-year in May, the highest since July 1965.

"A salaried individual like myself is really struggling because prices have skyrocketed in recent months," Sana Hashim said. "My income hasn't increased, but the inflation has."

Crisis reaches students outside Pakistan
Fears of a deteriorating economic situation have also put Pakistanis studying abroad in distress. Formerly, international students would return to the country to work, but now, with fewer jobs available, many opt to stay in their host countries and apply for permanent residency.

Parents are also finding it more challenging to transfer money to their children who are enrolled in universities abroad, as a result of the devaluation of the Pakistani currency.

"My parents are having a harder time affording my education in Australia, but I hope the decision will pay off when I finally obtain an Australian passport," student Ujala Tariq said.

Riaz Haq said…
The UK has become one of the world’s most accepting places for foreign workers, according to a survey in 24 nations revealing a sharp increase in British acceptance of economic migration.

Shortfall of 330,000 workers in UK due to Brexit, say thinktanks
Read more

People in the UK emerged as less likely to think that when jobs are scarce employers should give priority to people of their own country than those in Norway, Canada, France, Spain, the US, Australia and Japan. Only Germany and Sweden were more open on that question.

In what the study’s authors described as “an extraordinary shift”, only 29% of people in the UK in 2022 said priority over jobs should go to local people, compared with 65% when the same question was asked in 2009.

The findings come as employers call for more migration to help fill more than 1m vacancies, and after the prime minister appointed the anti-immigration firebrand Lee Anderson as deputy chair of the Conservative party. He has called people arriving in small boats on the south coast “criminals” and called for them to be “sent back the same day”. Police have been deployed to hotels where asylum seekers are being housed amid violent protests by anti-immigration activists.

“It was unthinkable a decade ago that the UK would top any international league table for positive views of immigration,” said Prof Bobby Duffy, the director of the Policy Institute at King’s College London, who shared the findings from the latest round of the survey exclusively with the Guardian and the BBC. “But that’s where we are now, with the UK the least likely, from a wide range of countries, to say we should place strict limits on immigration or prohibit it entirely.”

The UK ranked fourth out of 24 nations for the belief that immigrants have a very or quite good impact on the development of the country – ahead of Norway, Spain, the US and Sweden.

One factor in the shift in opinions on the question of “British jobs for British workers” may be that in 2009 the UK was in a deep recession, with more than double today’s unemployment, whereas today the economy suffers from a worker shortage, with 1.1m vacancies in the UK, 300,000 more than before the pandemic.

Robert Jenrick, the immigration minister, last year urged employers to look to the British workforce in the first instance and “get local people”, although the government has widened visa programmes for seasonal workers and care staff.

Duffy said the findings showed that “it’s time to listen more carefully to public attitudes”. He said: “Politicians often misread public opinion on immigration. In the 2000s, Labour government rhetoric and policy on this issue was more relaxed than public preferences, and arguably they paid the price – but the current government is falling into the reverse trap.”

People in the UK are now the least likely of the 24 countries that participate in the World Values Survey study to think immigration increases unemployment, and second from top in thinking that immigrants fill important job vacancies.

They are very likely to say immigration boosts cultural diversity, and very unlikely to think immigration comes with crime and safety risks. However, more people in the UK think immigration leads to “social conflict” than in several other countries, including Canada, Japan and China.
Riaz Haq said…
Why Americans Are Having Fewer Babies - WSJ

The number of babies born in the U.S. started plummeting 15 years ago and hasn’t recovered since. What looked at first like a temporary lull triggered by the 2008 financial crisis has stretched into a prolonged fertility downturn. Provisional monthly figures show that there were about 3.66 million babies born in the U.S. last year, a decline of 15% since 2007, even though there are 9% more women in their prime childbearing years.

The decline has demographers puzzled and economists worried. America’s longstanding geopolitical advantages, they say, are underpinned by a robust pool of young people. Without them, the U.S. economy will be weighed down by a worsening shortage of workers who can fill jobs and pay into programs like Social Security that care for the elderly. At the heart of the falling birthrate is a central question: Do American women simply want fewer children? Or are life circumstances impeding them from having the children that they desire?


To maintain current population levels, the total fertility rate—a snapshot of the average number of babies women have over their lifetime—must stay at a “replacement rate” of 2.1 children per woman. In 2021, the U.S. rate was 1.66. Had fertility rates stayed at their 2007 peak, the U.S. would now have 9.6 million more kids, according to Kenneth Johnson, senior demographer at the University of New Hampshire.

Federal agencies are treating the slump like a temporary downturn. The Social Security Administration’s board of trustees projects that the total fertility rate will slowly climb to 2 by 2056 and hold there until the end of the century. Yet it’s been over a decade since fertility rates reached that level. Last year there were 2.8 workers for every Social Security recipient. That ratio is projected to shrink to 2.2 by 2045, roughly two-thirds what it was in 2000.

Some other developed countries are in a far deeper childbearing trough than the U.S. In South Korea, the total fertility rate hit a world record low of 0.84 in 2020 and has since sagged to 0.78. Italy’s rate slid to 1.24 last year. China’s population fell in 2022 for the first time in decades because its fertility rate has been far below the replacement rate for years. Its two-century reign as the world’s most populous country is expected to end this year when India overtakes it, if it hasn’t already.

In a recent note to clients, Neil Howe, a demographer at Hedgeye Risk Management, pointed to a World Bank report showing that the 2020s could be a second consecutive “lost decade” for global economic growth, in large part because of worsening demographics. By 2026 or 2027, he wrote, the growth rate of the working-age population in the entire high-income and emerging-market world will turn from slightly positive to slightly negative, reversing a durable driver of economic growth since the Industrial Revolution.

This shift will make the U.S. more dependent on immigration to supply enough workers to keep the economy humming. Immigrants accounted for 80% of U.S. population growth last year, census figures show, up from 35% just over a decade ago. Yet the number of young immigrant women coming to the U.S. has diminished, Johnson said, and the decline in fertility has been greatest among Hispanics.

Having fewer children has already changed the social fabric of the country’s schools, neighborhoods and churches. J.P. De Gance, president and founder of Communio, a nonprofit that helps churches encourage marriage, said that lower marriage and birth rates are one of the largest drivers of the decline in religious affiliation that’s left pews empty across the country. That matters for the whole community, De Gance said, because churches give lonely people a place to form friendships, as well as feeding hungry people and running schools that fill gaps in public education. “When that’s diminished, the entire culture’s diminished,” he said.
Riaz Haq said…
Labour migration in Pakistan

Pakistan is one of the largest labour sending countries in the region. As of December 2019, more than 11 million Pakistanis have proceeded abroad for employment to over 50 countries through official procedures. The migration of Pakistani workers is mostly concentrated to Gulf Cooperation Council countries (96 per cent) with Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates hosting the majority. The Remittances by Migrant Workers to Pakistan reached to US$21.84 billion during 2019 financial year, 60-65 per cent of the remittances were from the Arab States.

The ILO works closely with Ministry of Overseas Pakistanis and Human Resource Development, and its affiliate institutions in developing Government’s Emigration Policy and capacity building. Collaborations with the ILO social partners and other stakeholders like Pakistan Overseas Employment Promoters Association (POEPA) have been growing stronger.

The DWCP (2016-22) focuses on enhancing compatibility of TEVT qualifications so that Pakistani migrant workers can compete for and secure skilled jobs in the destination countries. In order to promote safe and fair labour migration, easy and timely access to accurate information for perspective migrant workers is critical.

In Pakistan, the EU-funded ILO Global Action to Improve the Recruitment Framework of Labour Migration (REFRAME) project has been going on. It seeks to work in partnership with ILO constituents in Pakistan to address the challenges related to the
recruitment of migrant workers in line with the ILO’s General Principles and Operational Guidelines for Fair Recruitment and Definition of Recruitment Fees and Related Costs.

The ILO has commissioned a Rapid Assessment to gauge impact of COVID-19 on labour migration governance and relevant stakeholders to inform policy and programmes on how to address the challenges and emerging needs of relevant stakeholders and support labour migration governance.
Riaz Haq said…
Aging Japan wants foreign workers, but will they come?

TOKYO -- With Japan's population shrinking, the world's third-largest economy is becoming more serious about accepting foreign workers.

Yet various factors -- from the country's sluggish wage growth and old corporate cultures to Asian peers' new visa programs and rising pay levels in emerging economies -- pose challenges to Japan's efforts, clouding its prospects in an age of global talent competition.


Yamada of the Japan Research Institute said developed nations are scrambling to attract IT talent, "but Japan lags behind because of its lower pay."

According to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), the average wage in Japan rose only 3% between 2001 and 2021. That compares poorly to South Korea's 40% and the U.S.'s 29% in the same period. The median salary for software engineers in Japan last year was 23% lower than that of Singapore and 17% lower than in Seoul, according to data from, an online site that compares tech salaries.

Elsewhere in the region, the race to attract foreign talent has been intensifying after the COVID-19 pandemic, with many jurisdictions offering new programs. Singapore this year launched a new visa to lure highly skilled professionals, allowing those earning at least 30,000 Singapore dollars ($22,000) a month to stay five years and work for multiple employers.

Thailand and Malaysia are among the other nations that also have introduced new visa programs permitting longer stays by professionals in areas like electric vehicles and investment. Elsewhere, highly skilled workers are increasingly wanted, reflecting digital transformations and the emergence of new technologies, such as artificial intelligence.

An OECD study on migrant workers published in March found that New Zealand, Sweden and Switzerland are the most attractive countries for highly skilled workers. The study took into account factors such as educational standards, ease of obtaining citizenship for children of migrants and English proficiency as drivers attracting talent from abroad.
Riaz Haq said…
Country’s brain drain situation accelerated in 2022
Official documents showed more than 765,000 educated youth leave country for employment overseas

According to the official documents from the Bureau of Emigrants, this year 765,000 young people went abroad. The documents also showed that the number of emigrants had risen after registering a fall in two consecutive years, following 625,000 emigrations in 2019.

According to the documents, those who left the country in 2022, included more than 92,000 graduates, 350,000 trained workers and the same number of untrained labourers went abroad. The documents also showed that 736,000 people went to the Gulf states.

The emigrating educated youth included 5,534 engineers, 18,000 associate electrical engineers, 2,500 doctors, 2,000 computer experts, 6,500 accountants, 2,600 agricultural experts, over 900 teachers, 12,000 computer operators, 1,600 nurses and 21,517 technicians. The group of unskilled workers comprised 213,000 drivers.

According to the data, over 730,000 youth went to the Gulf States, nearly 40,000 went to European and other Asian countries. The country-wise break down of the data showed 470,000 Pakistanis headed to Saudi Arabia for employment, 119,000 to UAE, 77,000 to Oman, 51,634 to Qatar and 2,000 to Kuwait.

Also, according to the official documents, 2,000 Pakistanis went to Iraq, 5,000 to Malaysia, 602 to China, 815 to Japan, and 136 to Turkey. The documents also revealed that 478 Pakistan went to Sudan in Africa in search of employment.

The highest number of people emigrating to a European country was 3,160 youth, going to Romania. It was followed by 2,500 to Great Britain, 677 to Spain, 566 to Germany, 497 to Greece, and 292 to Italy. The Bureau of Emigrants also registered 700 people going to the United States.

More than half of those leaving the country were from Punjab. The documents said 424,000 emigrants this year were from Punjab, 206,000 from Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa plus 38,000 from newly-merged tribal districts, 54,000 from Sindh, 27,000 from Azad Kashmir, 7,000 from Balochistan and 6,000 from Islamabad.
Riaz Haq said…
Greece shipwreck highlights Pakistan human smuggling woes
Hundreds still missing after migrant vessel capsizes in Mediterranean Sea

About 40,000 Pakistanis a year leave the country through unofficial channels. Up to 90% of Pakistani migrants who reached Italy relied on smugglers and other illegal means, according to the Mixed Migration Centre, a Europe-based research group.

Some 34,000 were deported back to Pakistan last year from Europe, but that has not stopped the smugglers, who advertise widely on social media. Known by their slang name "dunkers," the smugglers can be found on Facebook offering to transport migrants overland from Pakistan to Turkey for between 200,000 and 400,000 rupees ($700 and $1,400) each.

Pakistani immigration lawyer Ahmed Jamal told Nikkei that human smugglers ply different routes to reach Europe, depending on how much they are paid. Most of the migrants on the capsized vessel are thought to come from the northern region of Kashmir, with some paying up to 2.3 million rupees to smugglers, local media reported.

"Those who pay high amounts are flown to North Africa legally, and from there transported to Europe on ships," Jamal said. Pakistanis who can't afford the flight to North Africa are often transported by a perilous land route to Greece, via Iran and Turkey.

The suspected smugglers in last week's disaster are expected to face manslaughter charges in Greece, while Pakistan said it has arrested a dozen suspects since the sinking.

The United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights has called for countries to clamp down on human trafficking in the wake of the tragedy, but the smuggling problem in Pakistan is driven by more than economic woes and weak law enforcement.

Corrupt officials willing to look the other way in exchange for bribes is another key issue, according to a former immigration official, who spoke on condition of anonymity. He told Nikkei that his efforts to crack down on smuggling rackets got him quickly transferred.

The government should step up its monitoring of travel consultants and how passports are issued in districts hit hardest by the migrant exodus, said the immigration lawyer, Jamal, adding that Islamabad must reach out for technical assistance.

"Developed countries will provide all possible help to Pakistan for preventing illegal migration because it's in their national interest," he added.
Riaz Haq said…
Greece boat disaster: A Pakistani father's anguish over his missing son

KARACHI, Pakistan, June 17 (Reuters) - Shahid Mehmood, a retired Pakistani civil servant, tried his best to persuade his son not to make the trip to Europe in search of a better life.

But 25-year-old Shehryar Sultan was determined to go.

Now, the father fears his son was among those lost in a disastrous boat capsize off Greece on Wednesday in which hundreds of people are thought to have died, among them Pakistanis. The family were praying for him to be recovered alive but by Friday evening had started to lose hope.

Mehmood, 60, said a local travel agent had charged 2.2 million Pakistani rupees ($7,653) for his son's trip, with the promise he would earn well in Europe.

"I tried to stop him; told him to forget the whole thing. But the travel agent had totally brainwashed him, telling him: 'You will only be on the way for two to three days,'" the father said. "My son was gullible, so he went along with them."

He did not name the agent.

Pakistan's economy is suffering record high inflation and an economic slowdown compounded by devastating floods last year.

Mehmood said his son did not have any travel document, or an identity card or passport, but the people who organised the trip flew him off from central city of Faisalabad.

Mehmood said his son stayed two days in Dubai, then six days in Egypt, before boarding a plane to Libya that was so crammed it had people sitting on the floor.

Sultan spent roughly four months in Tripoli before setting out to sea, living in what the father said were squalid conditions. Mehmood said he tried to get the agent to send his son home when he heard about the conditions in Libya, but nothing came of it.

He said he last heard from his son when Sultan got on a boat, which he believes was the doomed vessel.

"He sent a (text) message saying that he was sitting in a boat with around 400- 500 people. And they were expected to be at sea for five or six days," recalled Mehmood.

On Friday, the family was able to confirm that a companion of Sultan was among the dead, said Sultan's cousin, Adnan Iftikhar.

The death toll from Wednesday's disaster could run to many hundreds as witness accounts suggested that between 400 and 750 people had packed the fishing boat that sank about 50 miles (80 km) from the southern Greek town of Pylos.

Greek authorities have said 104 survivors and 78 bodies of the dead were brought ashore in the immediate aftermath. Hopes were fading of finding any more people alive.

Twelve Pakistanis were among survivors of the boat capsize, the country's Ministry of Foreign Affairs said on Saturday, but it did not have numbers for how many Pakistanis died, or their identities.

"My thoughts and prayers are with the bereaved families who lost their loved ones in the unfortunate ferry disaster in the Mediterranean Sea off the coast of Greece," Prime Minister Shahbaz Sharif said in a tweet on Saturday.

Most of the people on board the capsized boat were from Egypt, Syria and Pakistan, Greek government officials have said.

"All this is very wrong. The government needs to crack down on all these types of (travel) agents," said Mehmood. "This is cruelty. Sheer cruelty that gives heartache to parents which they will never get over all their lives."

Riaz Haq said…
In missing submersible and migrant disaster, a tale of two Pakistans

On social media, some Pakistanis pointed to the grim spectacle of compatriots from opposite ends of a great socioeconomic divide disappearing in the watery depths at the same time. Pakistan is in the middle of a devastating economic crisis, with the rate of inflation at a 50-year high, food shortages, energy blackouts and mounting unemployment. The conditions have compelled numerous people, especially among the poor, to seek a better life abroad.

“The desperate situation has led to the mushrooming growth of people smugglers in Pakistan,” wrote Zahid Shahab Ahmed, a senior research fellow at the Alfred Deakin Institute for Citizenship and Globalization in Australia. “In exchange for large sums of money, they offer people transportation, fake documentation and other resources for a swift departure from the country.”

“It is bad enough that the spectacular failure of the government to fulfill its part of the social contract by providing economic security to its citizens drives desperate individuals — even the educated ones — to leave the country,” noted a Monday editorial in Dawn, a Pakistani daily, further lamenting that “an inept, uncaring government has made little effort to crack down on a vast network of human smugglers who fleece desperate individuals and put them on a path strewn with hazards.”

Pakistani Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif declared Monday a national day of mourning, while authorities in various parts of the country arrested people suspected of links to human-trafficking networks. “Our thoughts and prayers are with you, and we pray that the departed souls find eternal peace,” the chairman of Pakistan’s Senate, Muhammad Sadiq Sanjrani, said, vowing to take on the people smugglers.

That may be cold comfort to many Pakistanis, who live in what by some measures is South Asia’s most unequal society, one long dominated by influential, quasi-feudal potentates. Sharif himself is a scion of a political dynasty that also has huge business interests.

Riaz Haq said…
Grief shrouds remote Pakistan mountain village after Greece migrant boat tragedy

Bandali, Pakistan-administered Kashmir

An air of melancholy engulfs the small village of Bandali in Pakistan-administered Kashmir, where hopes are fading fast for nearly two dozen residents who went abroad in search of a better life and have since disappeared.

Families fight back tears as they yearn to hear what may have happened to their loved ones – all migrants aboard the boat, reportedly known as the Adriana, an overcrowded fishing trawler that capsized off the coast of Greece last week, killing at least 81 people and leaving hundreds more missing.

In Pakistan, authorities said more than 300 of its nationals died in the tragedy, but did not specify how they received the information. On Thursday, the Federal Investigation Agency of Pakistan said it has confirmed 92 deaths in the incident by collecting DNA samples of family members who reported their loved ones as missing to assist with the identification of victims.

Bandali, population 12,000, is just one of many Pakistani communities reeling from the disaster – about 22 people from this village alone remain unaccounted for, according to residents.


Jabbar, 36, paid a human trafficker more than $7,500 in the hope of making it to Italy, traversing thousands of miles across dangerous routes from his home country to give his young daughters a better future, Anwar told CNN. Jabbar left his two daughters in the village while he went ahead with the journey.

Pakistan, a nation of about 220 million, is in the throes of its worst economic crisis in decades. Work is scarce; inflation is soaring; and essentials including food and fuel are increasingly costly.

The precise route Jabbar and his three family members took is unclear. But they arrived in Libya days before boarding the ill-fated boat there, aiming for their final destination: Italy.

Phone conversations between Anwar and Jabbar in the days leading up to the tragedy highlight the grim conditions faced by those making a trip controlled by a lucrative and all too often merciless network of international smugglers.
Riaz Haq said…
Why #Indians don't want to be Indian #citizens anymore? More than 1.6 million Indians have renounced their Indian citizenship since 2011, including a whopping 225,620 in 2022 alone, averaging around 618 per day. #Modi #BJP #Hindutva
#chaos #anarchy

"The principal reason why people migrate is economic well being. Everyone wants a better life and their hope is that they would find it in another country," Amit Dasgupta, former Consul-General of India in Sydney, told IANS.

"In sociology, this is referred to as 'the push factor'. You are pushed out to a place which offers better prospects," Dasgupta said.Many Indian students who go for higher studies abroad also end up settling there as these countries provide them better jobs with attractive pay scales.According to the latest Education Ministry data, more than 770,000 Indian students went abroad to study in 2022 -- a six-year high.

Also, many Indian students find it tough to find jobs after returning home, which is why they apply for permanent residency in their country of study.

More than 90 per cent of the students do not wish to come back to India, say estimates.When it comes to India's rich, they want to swim in foreign waters to diversify their fortune, set up alternative residencies, conduct business and pursue a better quality of life even though India continues to be an attractive environment for business activity and corporate growth.

A 2020 Global Wealth Migration Review report said that among many reasons why people make the decision to migrate to other countries is safety of women and children, lifestyle factors like climate and pollution, financial concerns including taxes, better healthcare for families and educational opportunities for children, and to escape oppressive governments.A low passport score of a country can also make individuals emigrate.

A higher passport index ranking ensures one gets better access to travel visa-free to many countries.The Indian passport registered the largest global fall in the Passport Index 2023 -- ranking at 144th position this year with a mobility score of 70.

This means Indians can travel to 21 countries visa-free, and need a visa for 128 countries.In contrast, a Greece or Portugal residency card provides Indians visa-free travel across all Schengen countries.
Riaz Haq said…
Migrant workers in Asia approach pre-pandemic levels
Remittances to home countries in Asia-Pacific region hit record high in 2022

In 2022, Saudi Arabia accepted a record 1.5 million workers from Asian countries and regions, according to the ADBI. This included more than 600,000 and 500,000 from Bangladesh and Pakistan, respectively. The UAE and Oman also accepted many workers from the two countries.


For emerging and developing countries, remittances from migrant workers are now valuable sources of foreign currency apart from foreign direct investment and official development assistance. The remittances shore up personal consumption and capital spending.

India received the largest amount of remittances, followed by China and the Philippines. Tonga and Samoa in the South Pacific and Kyrgyz and Tajikistan in Central Asia received remittances equal to more than 30% of each country's gross domestic product. As Central Asian diaspora often work in Russia, they may continue to be affected by developments in the war between Russia and Ukraine.


Bangladesh surpassed the Philippines as Asia's biggest supply of migrant workers in 2022 at 1.13 million. The number of laborers from the Philippines exceeded 1.6 million in 2016 and 2019 but declined in 2020. Despite a recovery to 820,000 in 2022, the Philippines fell behind Bangladesh.

Of Asian migrant workers who went to the U.S. and Europe, Indians outnumber others. U.S. work visas -- such as the H1B issued to IT workers and other professionals -- were obtained by 200,000 Indians in 2022, up 34% from 2019. In contrast, there were only 8,000 Chinese workers who headed to the U.S., reflecting U.S.-China tensions.


TOKYO/MANILA -- Cross-border traffic of migrant workers in Asia is on the rise as the effect of the pandemic fades. In 2022, the number of new migrant workers totaled 4.6 million, close to the figure before the COVID-19 outbreak, after countries eased or eliminated restrictions imposed to stop the spread of infections.

While Bangladesh became the biggest origin of migrant laborers, remittances by overseas workers in general hit an all-time high, helping the economies of home countries.

In late June, the Philippines' Department of Migrant Workers (DMW) in Manila was crowded with people looking for jobs overseas. "I easily found a high-paying job," said Juviline Llenado, who will work as a domestic helper in Saudi Arabia. To support her family, she plans to leave for the oil-rich kingdom in July.

Merchant sailors, who are treated as migrant workers in the Philippines, are also swelling the ranks. There were around 500,000 Filipino merchant sailors in 2019 but this number plunged during the COVID crisis. However, in the first three months of this year, the number stood at around 150,000. Susan Ople, secretary of the DMW, said, "You can see that the road to recovery is very clear".

There were 4.6 million new migrant workers in Asia in 2022, marking a sharp rebound from 1.8 million in 2020 and 2.2 million in 2021, according to the Asian Development Bank Institute (ADBI), the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development and the International Labor Organization. With China having ended its zero-COVID policy, the number is forecast to continue growing this year and could hit the pre-pandemic level of 5 million workers.

Demand for foreign workers has rebounded sharply because of the global economic recovery spurred by the easing of border controls. In particular, oil-producing countries in the Middle East, such as Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, are accepting large numbers of workers from Bangladesh and other South Asian countries.

Riaz Haq said…
Remittances sent home by Pakistanis working abroad fell to $27bn for the fiscal year 2023, compared with $31.3bn a year earlier, the country’s central bank said on Monday.

Remittances for June slumped to $2.2bn from $2.8bn a year earlier, central bank data showed. The remittances were mainly sourced from Saudi Arabia ($515.1m), the United Kingdom ($343m), the United Arab Emirates ($324.7m) and the United States ($272.3m).

According to the World Bank last year, Pakistan was the world’s sixth top recipient of remittances in 2022, behind India, Mexico, China, the Philippines and Egypt, although Tonga, Lebanon and Samoa are most dependent on money sent home from abroad as a percentage of GDP.

Pakistan’s economic crisis
The drop signals another blow to Pakistan’s economy which is facing its worst crisis since gaining independence from Britain in 1947.

Years of financial mismanagement, a global energy crisis and severe flooding have battered the economy, resulting in a slew of strict economic measures imposed by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) as Pakistan’s central bank looks to secure a bailout.

The $3bn short-term financial package from the IMF is subject to approval by its board on July 12.

Riaz Haq said…
Pakistan recorded an inflow of $2 billion as part of remittances sent by Pakistanis working abroad

“Remittances inflows during July 23 were mainly sourced from Saudi Arabia ($486.7 million), United Arab Emirates ($315.1 million), United Kingdom ($305.7 million) and United States of America ($238.1) million respectively,” the SBP said in a statement.


Pakistan’s remittance flow declined by more than 7 percent in July on a month-on-month basis, the Pakistani central bank said on Thursday, with Saudi Arabia being the largest contributor.

The South Asian country recorded an inflow of $2 billion as part of remittances sent by Pakistanis working abroad, according to the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP).

However, the inflows recorded a huge drop of 19 percent on a year-on-year basis.

“Remittances inflows during July 23 were mainly sourced from Saudi Arabia ($486.7 million), United Arab Emirates ($315.1 million), United Kingdom ($305.7 million) and United States of America ($238.1) million respectively,” the SBP said in a statement.

Pakistan and Saudi Arabia have deep cultural, defense and economic ties, deeply rooted in history and religion. The Kingdom is home to over two million Pakistanis, making it the largest contributor to remittance inflows into the South Asian country.

The decline in remittances comes at a time when Pakistan is about to witness the transition of power to a caretaker government in August that would run the South Asian country for at least three months until a general election, due in November.

Embroiled in economic and political crises for more than a month, Pakistan secured a crucial $3 billion deal with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in late June after months of delay, with economists blaming the delay in signing the IMF deal for the economic turmoil.

Dr. Vaqar Ahmed, Joint Executive Director at the Sustainable Development Policy Institute (SDPI), said the government’s inability to sign a timely deal with the IMF had been damaging to the economy.

“During [Finance Minister Ishaq] Dar’s tenure, particularly three areas, energy prices, exchange rate, tax exemptions and also tax rates remained under the observations of IMF and conditions related to these areas became more stringent,” Ahmed told Arab News.
Riaz Haq said…
72,000 non immigrant visas issued in year 2022 to Pakistanis for USA.

In 2019 the number was 59,000

2020 and 2021 Covid time was 34 and 20k

So 2020 2021 2022 average is still around 40k which is lower than 2019 avg

I can sympathize with ppl who see lots of ppl leaving and feeling every one is leaving as number of ppl leaving is 3 times more than 2021 and twice as much as 2020 .

However fact is ppl are going as they have always done. In fact we haven't returned to pre Covid levels of Emigration and tourism outside Pakistan

Even in 1997 close to 50,000 ppl were issued non immigrant visa by US from Pakistan!


Who’s Getting U.S. Immigrant Visas?
Last year, more than 285,000 U.S. immigrant visas were issued. Here’s a look how that is distributed across every country worldwide:

Rank Country Immigrant Visas Issued (2021)
#1 ๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ฝ Mexico 40,597
#2 ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ณ China 18,501
#3 ๐Ÿ‡ฉ๐Ÿ‡ด Dominican Republic 17,941
#4 ๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ญ Philippines 15,862
#5 ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡ซ Afghanistan 10,784
#6 ๐Ÿ‡ป๐Ÿ‡ณ Vietnam 10,458
#7 ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ณ India 9,275
#8 ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ป El Salvador 7,813
#9 ๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ฐ Pakistan 7,213
#10 ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ฉ Bangladesh 5,503
Total 285,069


H1 B visa from Pak to US

What is the H-1B Visa Category? The H-1B is a temporary (nonimmigrant) visa category that allows employers to petition for highly educated foreign professionals to work in “specialty occupations” that require at least a bachelor's degree or the equivalent.

In year 2022 , 1100 from Pakistan

166,000 from India !

If the exodus is 1100 ppl then we have nothing to fear

If 1100 is exodus than what is 166k

Why the one with 166k is rising India and one with 1100 failing Pakistan

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