Countries and their labor markets engage in measures to move forward from the debilitating impacts of the running COVID-19 pandemic. Migrant-origin country Philippines has felt the impact of the return migrations of her migrant workers, who may now want to return to their overseas jobs or go to new destination countries. Yet migrant-destination countries continue to contain SARS-CoV-2 given the emergence of new variants. These containment measures stun the recovery of these labor markets for migrant workers. This policy paper illustrates the cases of three migration corridors on how they respond to current levels of viral transmission, and try to re-open their labor markets to migrant workers. The cases illustrate ad hoc measures that have left destination countries stuck in continually containing the virus, thus rendering their labor markets feeble. If countries want to relaunch their economies, this aspiration may require bilateral, regional and multilateral approaches to protect human capital and meet shared labor needs beside this pandemic.

–published in an “International Migration Report” with the theme migrant workers and labor markets during the pandemic. This IMR was freshly released by the Centro Studi Emigrazione Roma (Italy) and the Scalabrini International Migration Network in Europe-Africa Region –both run by the Missionaries of St. Charles – Scalabrinians.

by former research center director Dr. Alvin P. Ang and RCSSED research associate Jeremaiah Opiniano