KNOMAD-ILO Migration Costs Surveys

The KNOMAD-ILO Migration Costs Surveys (MCS) aim to systematically document monetary and non-monetary costs incurred by migrant workers seeking jobs abroad. The project is a joint initiative by the Global Knowledge Partnership on Migration and Development (KNOMAD), which is hosted at the World Bank, and the International Labor Organization (ILO). The data is also intended to support methodological work on developing a new Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) indicator 10.7.1 to monitor trends in recruitment costs paid by workers, of which the World Bank and ILO are joint custodians.

Datasets and documentation for the 2015 and 2016 survey waves are now available on the World Bank’s Central Microdata Catalog. Collectively, the surveys covered over 19 bilateral migration corridors with a total of 5,603 interviewed migrants.

The Migration Costs Surveys primarily focused on costs incurred by workers who were recruited in their home countries and received a job offer prior to migrating. On a pilot basis, several migration corridors were also surveyed to account for non-recruited migrants who moved abroad in search of work without prior job offers. In the 2015 dataset, these are limited to workers who migrated to Mexico from Guatemala, Honduras and El-Salvador and in 2016, the relevant corridors are workers who migrated to Italy from multiple African countries and from Central Asia to Russia.

Link to 2016 KNOMAD-ILO Migration Cost Surveys

The dataset consists of 5 surveys covering 9 bilateral migration corridors with a total of 2,454 interviewed migrants. The following corridors are included in the 2016 dataset:

  • India-Saudi Arabia

  • Philippines to Saudi Arabia

  • Nepal to Malaysia, Qatar and Saudi Arabia

  • Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan to Russia (non-recruited workers)

  • West African countries to Italy (non-recruited workers)

Link to 2015 KNOMAD-ILO Migration Costs Surveys

The dataset consists of 7 surveys covering 10 bilateral corridors with a total of 3,149 migrants. The following corridors are included in the 2015 dataset:

  • Pakistan to Saudi Arabia and United Arab Emirates

  • Ethiopia to Saudi Arabia

  • India to Qatar

  • Nepal to Qatar

  • Philippines to Qatar

  • Vietnam to Malaysia

  • Guatemala, Honduras and El-Salvador to Mexico (non-recruited workers)