Impact of COVID-19 on Nepali Migrant Workers: A Case Study of Migrant Workers in Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Qatar and Malaysia

Author(s): Sadikshya Bhattarai, Jeevan Baniya and Dogendra Tumsa

Migrant workers, including Nepali labour migrants, have been among the most affected by the health and economic impact caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Obstacles in accessing justice, a long-standing problem for migrant workers, has been further exacerbated by the pandemic. This study looked at the impact of COVID-19 on Nepali migrant workers in four major destination countries—Malaysia, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and the UAE. Additionally, the situation of access to justice for migrant workers in destination countries and at home and the reintegration experience of returnee migrants was examined. The study used a mixedmethod approach, consisting of literature review, survey and in-depth interviews with current and returnee migrants as well as key informant interviews to collect information on the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on Nepali migrant workers. The key findings from the study are presented below.

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