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An Overview Paper on Overseas Employment in Nepal
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Nepal has a long history of labour migration. For around 200 years, Nepali men (and to a lesser extent women) have been leaving their homes to seek employment and living abroad. Even before the well-known recruitment to British-Indian armies, poor Nepalese fled excessive taxation, corvee labour and exploitation from state agencies. At present a large proportion of labourers go abroad temporarily, with the aim of returning back to their homeland. Foreign labour migration and subsequent remittances prop up the country's ailing economy. Yet, this important sector continues to be neglected by policy makers and planners. In the distant as well as recent past, policy makers have turned a blind eye to this aspect of the economy. And they have looked down upon those who go to do menial work in other countries.
Plans for Nepal's development have tended to pay relatively little attention to foreign labour migration and flows of remittances back home; despite evidence of their substantial importance to rural households. Foreign labour migration is generally seen as an unfortunate, and essentially marginal, by-product of a stagnant rural economy. This is one of the reasons for a lack of statistics in Nepal regarding labour migration and income from remittances. Government agencies did not begin to maintain records of labour migrants and remittances until recently, and the informal nature of this economy continues to make formal recording difficult. Existing and often controversial data is based largely on estimates.
ILO ,   (2004 )
Type / Script:
Progress Report in English
Thematic Group:
 ILO : International Labor & Labor
12.04.00  -  Labour Relations
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