Migration and COVID-19 in Context: Labor Migration and the Agriculture Sector in Nepal

Author(s): Shalini Gupta, Arjun Kharel and Fraser Sugden

Year of Publication: 2022

International labor migration is the cornerstone of household livelihoods in rural Nepal. The country receives remittances equivalent to about a quarter of its gross domestic product (GDP) annually (WB 2020). In the past two years, however, the international labor markets that Nepali workers depend on
have been significantly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Since the first nationwide lockdown imposed in Nepal (and globally) in March 2020, and subsequent restrictions on mobility in the country and around the world, labor migration to India and other countries has been disrupted while there has also been an upsurge in return migration, often under
conditions of distress (Baniya et al. 2020).

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