Making Migration Free: An analysis of Nepal’s ‘free-visa, free-ticket’ scheme

Author(s): Bandita Sijapati, Mohd Ayub and Himalaya Kharel

Year of Publication: 2017

In South Asia Migration Report 2017: Recruitment, Remittances and Reintegration, edited By S. Irudaya Rajan

Published by: Routledge India

Among the many initiatives, the possibility of ‘zero-cost migration’ for workers has received much consideration as the ‘ideal condition’ or an ‘aspiration’ in bilateral labour negotiations, regional discussions and international forums. Thus, when the Government of Nepal (GoN) announced in July 2015 that the process of labour migration from Nepal would be free of cost, or with the minimum cost possible, it generated much interest and speculation on the issue and mixed reactions from different stakeholders. In such a context, this chapter seeks to understand and elucidate on the underlying aspects of the ‘zero-cost migration policy’ of Nepal, more precisely the ‘free-visa, free-ticket’ scheme, and its implications on the foreign employment sector, including on existing migration practices that have a direct bearing on concerned stakeholders.


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