Number Of Migrant Workers In Lebanon Down By 83%

Number Of Migrant Workers In Lebanon Down By 83%
TDS/Mohamad Azakir

The number of foreign migrant workers in Lebanon has declined greatly over the past couple of years, new figures have shown.

According to statistics published by the Beirut-based research organization, Information International, the number of work permits issued by General Security dropped from 57,957 to 9,780 between 2019 and 2020.

The statistics show that the local Ghanian workforce declined by 93.3%; the Philippinian workforce by 86.3%; and the Bangladeshi workforce by 85.3%. In total, 83% fewer migrant workers were registered in Lebanon in 2020 compared to 2019.

Similarly, 1,360 (79.2%) fewer Egyptian workers and 348 (47.5%) fewer Indian workers were working in Lebanon in 2020 than in the previous year.

The decline in Lebanon’s foreign workforce can be largely attributed to the deteriorating economic situation and the accompanying disappearance of U.S. dollars from the local market. This, along with the poor treatment of the workers under the Kafala system.

The reverse migration wave of foreign workers was triggered with the onset of the economic meltdown, and it continues to unfold as the Lebanese pound continues to crumble against the dollar, setting a new record low on Tuesday.

It’s worth noting that the devaluation of Lebanon‘s national currency turned the tables in terms of the national wages against those of foreign workers.

Previously, the salaries of migrant workers were considered too low. However, their local value has now soared in comparison to national wages, which have depreciated severely with the fall of the pound.

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