Migration trends

Although many people still grumble about working in India, the economic growth of the 1990s does appear to have reduced the temptation of Indians to work overseas. Though the table above is a bit dated, it does reveal some very interesting trends:
Watch the 90s when Indians migrated in large numbers making them the third largest population of migrants in the world. Then watch how both the numbers and the ranking dip in 2005 from 7.4 million to 5.7 million and the ranking from 3 to 8. Evidently, India could become a lot more interesting in the years to come.
This fascination for India among Indians is likely to increase. One of the reasons for this is that many countries have upped immigration barriers when it comes to Indians. For instance, all countries in the European Union (EU) must first consider the job applications of unemployed EU citizens before looking at those of non-EU migrants.
There’s also the phenomenon of returning Indian migrants that began with IT professionals almost five years ago. Buoyed by the IT boom in India, they found that opportunities in India had began to match, if not better, those in other countries. A couple of years ago, construction workers and others from lesser paid professions began a return trek to India. Most of them often found West Asia a very attractive place to work. But the construction boom here made many of these Indians look towards India once again. For the past two years, most countries in West Asia have witnessed a reverse migration of Indian workers. Construction companies in India had increased the salary bar for skilled workers. Not surprisingly, costs of employing drivers, electricians and other such workers have spiralled in West Asia, particularly in Dubai and Riyadh.
Now, there is a third category.Finance sector employees are expected to return to India by the tens of thousands in the next two years, as the US begins regulating the financial sector there, and putting severe controls on companies engaged in creating or selling derivative products.
Most of these people are likely to head back to India, where hopefully a growing banking sector will be able to absorb them. These prodigals may not be able to draw better salaries and may be returning primarily because they will have few options left.
Meanwhile, China is unlikely to change its approach to internal T migration. It faces two challenges. The first is to find a way out of an export-driven growth (and reducing at the same time the $2.5 trillion (Rs121.75 trillion) pile of US paper it is sitting on).
The second is to find a way to allow domestic demand to grow without upsetting the two-passport regime it has in place. It may be recalled that China does not allow people who have rural identity cards to travel to urban areas where people have a different ID card. And selling consumer goods in the rural areas might stoke consumer expectations that existing income sources may not be able to match, thus fomenting social discontent and political unrest.

No comments: