The context of global migration has changed dramatically since the beginning of 2020. Both within and between countries there has been a substantial curtailment of movement. As a result of multiple lockdowns, economic activity has severely declined and labor markets have ground to a halt. In mid-2020, the spectre of mass unemployment in industrialized economies loomed on the horizon. For both migrant hosting and origin countries – some are substantially both – this poses a set of complex development challenges. Some speak of a ‘new normal’ emerging, perhaps with less movement, more use of technology and, overall, a reduction in the global transport system that we have become accustomed to using. However, this suggests that there is suppressed demand to move for work elsewhere as well as a change in the nature of labor markets, particularly those that seek to make profits from large wage differentials within and between countries. There is no apparent evidence that this is yet the case; and an eagerness to work abroad, or in cities, remains the norm among the burgeoning youth in many low- and middleincome economies. The wider context of economic shock and changes to social systems, including the widely-reported mass movements of people within – and to some extent between – countries, seem to herald a different global migration order. However, it is worth asking whether this is really going to be the case, as many of the country examples in this short report make plain (note: this report was compiled from information available at an early stage of the pandemic). While the coupling of health risks with migrant movement may establish new levels of control and scrutiny, and to some degree attach new stigmas to migration in some contexts, the economic imperative of labor demand and supply at an international level means challenges will probably be overcome.

Between a rock and a hard place: early experience of migration challenges under the Covid-19 pandemic.

Masotti, M.;Vittuari, M.;
2020

Abstract

The context of global migration has changed dramatically since the beginning of 2020. Both within and between countries there has been a substantial curtailment of movement. As a result of multiple lockdowns, economic activity has severely declined and labor markets have ground to a halt. In mid-2020, the spectre of mass unemployment in industrialized economies loomed on the horizon. For both migrant hosting and origin countries – some are substantially both – this poses a set of complex development challenges. Some speak of a ‘new normal’ emerging, perhaps with less movement, more use of technology and, overall, a reduction in the global transport system that we have become accustomed to using. However, this suggests that there is suppressed demand to move for work elsewhere as well as a change in the nature of labor markets, particularly those that seek to make profits from large wage differentials within and between countries. There is no apparent evidence that this is yet the case; and an eagerness to work abroad, or in cities, remains the norm among the burgeoning youth in many low- and middleincome economies. The wider context of economic shock and changes to social systems, including the widely-reported mass movements of people within – and to some extent between – countries, seem to herald a different global migration order. However, it is worth asking whether this is really going to be the case, as many of the country examples in this short report make plain (note: this report was compiled from information available at an early stage of the pandemic). While the coupling of health risks with migrant movement may establish new levels of control and scrutiny, and to some degree attach new stigmas to migration in some contexts, the economic imperative of labor demand and supply at an international level means challenges will probably be overcome.
Nicol, A.; Abdoubaetova, A.; Wolters, A.; Kharel, A.; Murzakolova, A.; Gebreyesus, A.; Lucasenco, E.; Chen, F.; Sugden, F.; Sterly, H.; Kuznetsova, I.; Masotti, M.; Vittuari, M.; Dessalegn, M.; Aderghal, M.; Phalkey, N.; Sakdapolrak, P.; Mollinga, P.; Mogilevskii, R.; Naruchaikusol, S.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11585/804196
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