Tackling migration in Tajikistan
Twenty years after the collapse of the Soviet Union and nearly 15 years after the end of the bitter ethnic and tribal civil war that tore Tajikistan apart, endemic poverty and an economy that struggles to find jobs for half its workforce means migrant labour is critical.
Fifty percent of Tajikistan’s annual gross domestic product, around US$1.7 billion, is sent home each year from the estimated one million, mostly male, migrant workers.
The vast majority of those men work in Russia where wages are seven times higher than at home.
The sheer size of this migrant workforce – representing more than one-tenth of the entire Tajikistan population of 7.6 million – makes it a key factor which shapes current employment and training policies.
Migration is seen as both a positive factor, as a source of economic and political stability, as the absent migrant workers can reduce social tensions at home by creating job opportunities for those left behind.
It is also negative because of its adverse impact on families left behind and because few skills picked up abroad, apart from building and construction qualifications, are relevant to the Tajikistan economy.
Now the Tajikistan government, with the help of the European Training Foundation, the World Bank and other donor agencies, has begun to formulate
long-term strategic policies to reform the internal labour market to ensure Tajikistan is less reliant upon exporting migrant labour.
Read full article in the ETF's Live&Learn magazine