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Reverse migration during covid 19 times


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Reverse migration during covid 19 times. This is a brief note to keep Companies in the Middle East updated on the current Covid-19 situation as related to repatriation and migration of Indian workers.

There are a large number of employees who are returning (consensus figure is between 600,000 - 800,000) and want to return from the Middle East to India*. This report covers some insights into the current and expected situation and also the scenario of job losses in the Gulf and India

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Reverse migration during covid 19 times

  1. 1. Page | 1© Ambe International – Reverse Migration Trends (Indian workers returning during COVID Times)
  2. 2. Page | 2© Ambe International – This is a brief note to keep our Clients updated on the current Covid-19 situation as related to repatriation and migration of Indian workers and employees who want to return from the Middle East to India. We look forward to staying in touch during these difficult times - all of us on a personal and Company level face unprecedented challenges and we need to stand in solidarity. We request you to please share with us any actionable insights / information that could help. Indians who want to return from the Middle East to India The consensus figure of Indians who want to return from the Middle East to India is between 600,000 - 800,000. Anecdotally - NORKA has registered 300,000 workers who are interested to return in 48 hours from time of announcement (this is only for Kerala). Destination Countries Saudi and United Arab Emirates (UAE) seem to have the largest issue in terms of repatriation of Indian workers. As they have the largest numbers of workers the volume of Indian workers who want to return from there also seems largest in these countries.
  3. 3. Page | 3© Ambe International – Segmentation of Workers who are looking to return back to India Using quick surveys, information sourced from Embassies and anecdotal information from candidates – the candidates wanting to return back to India can broadly be divided into the below segments based on their different motivations or situations. People are working and getting their wages and companies want them to stay Not enough work / reduced wages - but work is available on less attractive terms. This is primarily the case for Oil & Gas projects, Aviation and Banking industries No work and waiting to come back - but getting food / accommodation. This is primarily the case with Hospitality and Construction industries Distress - No work. Food / Accommodation not being given. This is primarily the case for workers in Unorganized Retail, Agriculture, Facilities, Visit visa and Illegal (overstayed) workers 50 + Workers above 50 years are at higher risk and Companies are asking them to return Amnesty / Workers who have gone illegally and stayed back Candidates who have travelled on visit visas to search for jobs and visas are about to expire or have expired Visas have expired after end of shutdown or end of their contract period Family emergency and worker wanting to return irrespective of above situation People stuck in camps who have been mobilized after February 2020 onwards - they may not have done their medicals, or have visas stamped Workers waiting for their exit stamps on visas in country like KSA needed There is a herd mentality setting in and people in stable situations may also want to return Some segments like healthcare are OK and workers are not expected to return Domestic workers are still in demand and are not expected to return in large numbers
  4. 4. Page | 4© Ambe International – Estimate of Job Losses by Industry The Figure below shows the breakdown of potential job losses across sectors in the UAE. This is based on losses by sector in other countries and is sourced from a Oxford Economics report GCC Population De-Growth Most Clients of Ambe International expect a long period of hiatus in projects and employment pickup up the sectors of Tourism, Construction and Retail. However some Clients expect a resurgence in projects related to Oil & Gas between October - December 2020. Although some of the displaced workers will find new jobs in this resurgence and will come back to the Middle East for employment - so that new expat workers will arrive - there is likely to be significant reductions in populations across the GCC. This will have impacts on local economic activity and asset deflation (real-estate, banking, retail etc)
  5. 5. Page | 5© Ambe International – Rehabilitation of Workers in India Indian Citizens coming back from the Middle East to India will find that the job situation in India is far worse than in the Middle East and the recovery period will be long extending to the end of the year. This report is based on publicly available data, and feedback from Recruitment Companies and Associations, Candidates and Companies based in the Middle East. The data has been compiled in part based on anecdotal information and conversations. It is very difficult to verify this information scientifically at this point but would probably serve as the best signals of trends that we expect to see. Report dated 2nd May 2020 For further information/any queries contact: AMAL SAXENA, DIRECTOR, AMBE INTERNATIONAL Mobile: + 91 9870245398 Email: