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TRANSIT MIGRATION IN ASIA

by Graeme Hugo, Federation Fellow Professor of Geography and Director of the National Centre for Social Applications of GIS, The University of Adelaide

Paper presented to Annual Bank Conference on Development Economics, Mita Conference Hall, Tokyo, Japan
29-30 May 2006

Outline of Presentation
• Introduction
• Conceptualising Transit Migration in Asia • Forced Migrants as Transit Migrants in Asia • South-North Movement and Transit Migration in Asia • The Chinese as Transit Migrants • Conclusion

Reasons for Neglect
• Lack of migration data generally • Much involves undocumented migration • Focus on economic and labour migrants

“Internal” Transit Migration • False dichotomy • Link with international labour migration • Indonesian case studies .

Features of Transit Migration in Asia • Part of growth of temporary migration • Transit point distinguished by its “way station” character rather than as a destination • It’s “midway to nowhere character” • Key role played by the migration industry • Often involves movement without documentation .

000 1.000. 1980 to 2004 Source: UNHCR Statistics 8.000 7.000.000 0 1980 1981 1982 1983 1984 1985 1986 1987 1988 1989 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2000 2001 2002 Year Afghanistan Viet Nam Other 4000000 3500000 3000000 2500000 2000000 1500000 1000000 500000 0 Countries of Asylum Number 1980 1981 1982 1983 1984 1985 1986 1987 1988 1989 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2003 Year Pakistan India Thailand China 2004 2003 2004 .000 4.000.000.000 6.000 Countries of Origin Number 5.000.000 2.000 3.000.Forced Migration and Transit Migration in Asia Asia: Refugees by Countries of Asylum and Origin.000.000.

347 14.252 23 19 2 1 543 117 188 49 4.646 11.831 11.296 22.510 1.770 1.565 2.597 55.Migrants from Vietnam.092 1.639 209 16 9 54. Cambodia and Laos living in OECD Countries.599.953 . 2000 Source: OECD data base Country of Residence Australia Austria Belgium Canada Switzerland Czech Republic Germany Denmark Spain Finland France United Kingdom Greece Hungary Ireland Japan Korea Luxembourg Mexico Netherlands Norway New Zealand Poland Portugal Slovakia Sweden Turkey United States Vietnam Afghanistan Cambodia Laos 154.044 276.945 1.126 2.017 22 30 2 1 3 3 355 388 7 2 138.980 1.375 8.151 794 1.950 1.793 23.884 558 36 30 729 106 7 34 12.000.111 150.610 19.750 8. Afghanistan.017 9.750 3.376 610 7.277 3.787 40.610 22.875 706 464 226 334 10 6 1.490 248.771 32 1.310 154.905 134 27 599 152 36 166 2.433 327 36 10.273 1.882 338 99 6 114.245 206.979 9.785 1 9 24.651 21 693 11.105 738 154 2 74 7.965 175 1.847 817 14.015 14.575 6.636 46.

0 22.7 36.958 9.7 31.0 .337 100. % 136.959 58.574 23.903 10.1 236.5 23.1 28. 24 Livelihood Daily Wage Dependent Employed Self Employed Other Total Camps No.842 6.0 Non Camps No.Afghanistan Families in Pakistan – Source of Livelihood 2005 Source: UNHCR 2005.668 9.0 27.768 100. % 155.804 8.675 15.9 311.7 15.086 49.2 68.636 10.

000 .268 individuals 548.049.106 families Total population of Pakistan 143.2005 Census of Afghans in Pakistan 3.500.

2005 Source: UNHCR 2005. 55 .Pakistan: Location of Self Employed Afghans (%).

000 in border camps • 1 million elsewhere .Burmese (Myanmar) Refugees in Thailand 2006 • 120.

fishing • Labour shortages • Occupational segregation • Labour market segmentation .Occupational Segregation of Burmese Migrants • Low skilled – domestic services. rice mills. factory work. agriculture.

Labour Immigration and Labour Market Segmentation in Thailand BURMA THAILAND Predominantly rural but some urban people Fishing Agriculture Construction Domestic Service Factory Work SINGAPORE TAIWAN JAPAN MIDDLE EAST MALAYSIA Factory Work Entertainment Domestic Service .

Corollaries of Labour Market Segmentation (Massey. et al. 1993) • Migration is demand driven • Migration is structurally entrenched • Wages held down • Government intervention limited • Demand independent of economic vicissitudes .

Exodus of intelligensia from Burma in 1988 .Some Involvement of High Skill e.g.

South African Refugees (Weiner 1993) • The exodus of Tamils from Sri Lanka to Southern India • Pakistanis stranded in Bangladesh after Bangladesh was created from East Pakistan • Burmese Muslims moving to Bangladesh • Hill Tribe Groups moving from Bangladesh to India • Other Bangladeshis moving to India • Tibetans moving to India • Bengalis moving to Assam • Nepalis moving to India • Nepalis moving to Bhutan .

1989-90 to 2004-05 Source: DIMIA 2002 and 2005a 4500 4000 3500 3000 Number Boat Arrivals Air Arrivals 2500 2000 1500 1000 500 0 1989/90 1990/91 1991/92 1992/93 1993/94 1994/95 1995/96 1996/97 1997/98 1998/99 1999/00 2000/01 2001/02 2002/03 2003/04 Year 2004/05 .Australia: Unauthorised Arrivals.

25 Onshore Unauthorised Boat Arrivals by Country of Citizenship Note: No boat arrivals in 2002-03 and 2004-05 . p.Onshore Unauthorised Boat Arrivals by Country of Citizenship. 31. 2000-01 to 2004-05 Source: DIMIA 2005a.

31. 25 Protection Visas Claims By Countries or Territories of Citizenship . p.Onshore Unauthorised Boat Arrivals by Country of Citizenship. 2000-01 to 2004-05 Source: DIMIA 2005a.

Staging Points for People Smuggling to Australia 1998-99 Source: DIMIA 1999 .

Routes Taken by Iraqi and Sudanese Settlers Coming to Australia Source: Hinsliff 2006 .

657 8.454 86.400 244.987 100. 31 Country Australia Austria Belgium Canada Switzerland Czech Republic Germany Denmark Spain Finland France Great Britain Greece Hungary Ireland Japan Korea Luxembourg Mexico Netherlands Norway New Zealand Poland Portugal Slovak Republic Sweden Turkey USA Total Asian-Born 1.669 18.302 9.274 175.402.732 4.479 16.040.579.854 10.655 57.799 116.375 444.115.494 2.236 68.859 1.765 367.021 110.839 .240 16.382 10.768 969.590 101.599 21.246 83.365 567.828.774 1.730 27.South-North Migration and Transit Migration in Asia Stocks of Asia-Born Persons in OECD Nations Around 2000 Source: Dumont and Lemaitre 2005.133 75.

The Key Role of the Migration Industry • In both documented and undocumented migration • Channels migration into selected transit points • Stepping off points to OECD countries • Complex linkages between Asylum Seekers and economic migration .

Asians Using Central and Eastern Europe As Transit Points “constitute the only land neighbour to the European Union directly accessible from the South. Having in mind the growing migratory potential of developing countries we can expect a rise in the scale of transit migration in CEE.” Kaczmarczyk and Okólski (2005) . As a consequence. a transit point for migrants from less developed parts of the world (mainly Asia and Africa) heading for countries of the “old” European Union. they are. and will continue to be.

• The expanding activities of the migration industry in the region which is developing cities in the region as transit points for eventual migration into the European Union Countries.Why CEE and Russia? • A weakening of the CEE migration infrastructure (see also Rybakovski and Ryazantsev 2005) which has made it easier for Asians to enter (usually as tourists or students) and then overstay. . • The demographic pressures in the CEE countries which have been exacerbated by emigration and created job opportunities for Asian migrants in these countries to earn the funds to pay for their entry into the European Union. • The growing communities of Asians in these countries who facilitate transit migration and provide the migrants with assistance during their period of transit.

Sri Lankans and Nepalese headed to the United States. Europe. 22 July 1997 . Bangladeshis. Pakistanis. Korea and Japan.000 illegal migrants move through Thailand each month with fake passports and visas arranged in Bangkok and that 50. Bangkok Post. Police estimate that about 1. Canada.000 are in Bangkok at any one time”.“Thailand has become a major transit country for Indians. Many of those migrants wind up as illegal workers in Thailand and Malaysia.

The Nexus between Transit Migration and the Sex Industry • Key role of Thailand • Bangkok as the transit point for Thailand and neighbouring countries • Role of migration industry • Link with people smuggling and trafficking • Link between transit and sex-work .

Bangkok as a Transit Point in the International Sex Industry • Europe – often involving links with sex tourism and with former migrants and tourists getting commissions and playing a role. Australia and Europe. • Hong Kong and Taiwan • Japan and China • USA and Canada • Australia and New Zealand . • Malaysia and Singapore – often are transit points where Thai women work as prostitutes while waiting to go to Japan. Taiwan.

• Agents who work for an employment agency and located close to major transit points like railway stations and bus stations in Bangkok. They are involved in initial recruitment. often either influential community leaders or women who have already experienced migration for sex work. They send girls to work in night clubs and bars in return for their first three months wages. et al. • Agents involved in actually sending women abroad. 1997) • Local people. often also former sex workers • Companies with links to overseas employers of sex workers. .Types of Agents (Skrobanek.

Legal Transitting : New Zealand Australia • Trans Tasman Agreement • Substantial migration of New Zealand citizens to Australia • Substantial migration from Asia-Pacific to New Zealand • Differences in Points Assessment Test • Qualifying as New Zealand Citizen • 25.4 percent of New Zealand Citizens in Australia foreign-born .

Australia & New Zealand 355. Central America & the Caribbean 376 Sub-Saharan Africa 4.New Zealand Citizens(a) Present in Australia by Country of Birth at 30th June 2005 Source: DIMIA 2005b. . 40 Birthplace No.330 North Africa & the Middle East 1.419 Northern Africa 1.691 Rest of the Pacific 23. p. students and visitors.652 South America.953 Supplementary Codes The Former USSR & Baltic States nfd 392 Total 448.781 Southeast Asia 4.376 Not Stated(b) 27.430 Southern & Central Asia 3. (b) Includes other NEI. temporary residents.775 Northeast Asia 4.774 (a) Includes permanent residents.599 Europe 20.

The Chinese as Transit Migrants Number of Chinese Travelling Abroad for Business and Tourism 19812003 and Total Number of Outbound Trips from China. 9 February 2006 . 24 June 2004. Asia Times Online. 30. 1997-2004 Source: Far Eastern Economic Review. p.

• One sixth of world population • 100 million floating workers • 40 million overseas Chinese • Yakuza (snakeheads) • The role of Fujian province .

The Golden Venture Incident 1993 • Public realisation in US of scale of Chinese people smuggling • Crackdown produced proliferation of routes and increase in places of transit • Transit points both within and outside Asia • Growing significance of Canada. Caribbean and Latin America .

Conclusion • Data issues • Need to be phenomenon considered as a distinct • Increasing focus since 9/11 because of security dimension (Bali Process) .

Transit Migration is Likely to Increase in Significance • Scale of migration is increasing • The proliferating migration industry • The involvement of a wider range of people • Network extension • Increasing barriers to migration to OECD and Asian high income nations .