Labor Migration in Asia: Changing Profiles and Processes

Publication | June 2023

Factors driving labor migration in the next decade will include not only increased demand for skills but also shifts in demographics and policy changes.

Labor Migration in Asia: Changing Profiles and Processes analyzes labor migration trends in Asia, taking into account the landscape of labor markets after the lifting of strict entry and cross-border controls imposed during the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic. The report highlights recent developments in labor migration and associated policy measures in major origin and destination economies, drawing upon case studies from selected economies.

Chapter 1 overviews regional trends, including in labor migration and remittance flows. Chapter 2 describes the new profile of labor demand in Gulf Cooperation Council countries and the implications for labor migration in Asia. Chapter 3 examines the role of digitalization in improving recruitment and emigration processes for migrant workers in India and Sri Lanka.

The report also provides up-to-date comparative statistics on labor migration flows in, to, and from Asia. Two statistical annexes offer detailed economy fact sheets and coverage of intra-Asia and cross-regional migration flows.

The report is based, in part, on policy maker and expert discussions during the “12th Annual ADBI–OECD–ILO Roundtable on Labor Migration: Recovering from COVID-19: What Does It Mean for Labor Migration in Asia?”, cohosted by the Asian Development Bank Institute, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, and the International Labour Organization.


Additional Details

  • Capacity development
  • Governance and public sector management
  • Social development and protection
  • 978-4-89974-273-9 (Print)
  • 978-4-89974-274-6 (PDF)