Labour migration

The lack of decent employment opportunities has led many to seek employment abroad. Some of the countries of Central and Eastern Europe are among those most affected by both internal and external migration . The ILO estimates, for example, that 40 per cent of the Albanian workforce is working abroad, and that a quarter of the economically active population of the Republic of Moldova is working outside the country. As foreign workers are often employed in precarious work situations and are among the first to be laid off, this has aggravated the unemployment situation in the region following the crisis.
The ILO Decent Work Technical Support Team and Country Office for Central and Eastern Europe provides assistance in forging national policies and resources to better manage labour migration so that it contributes positively to the growth and development of both home and host societies, as well as to the well-being of migrants themselves in the Central and Eastern European region. The ILO emphasizes the need to protect migrants’ labour rights in host countries. The team also helps to build the capacity of labour market institutions, including the social partners, on the design, monitor and evaluation of active labour market policies targeting migrant workers.


  1. Veaceslav Bicbaev, a pensioner from Moldova


    Helping migrant workers to secure social security rights

    19 December 2013

    At least 25 per cent of workers in Moldova will work abroad at some point in their career. However, few of them know that in many cases they are entitled to receive social security benefits from their destination countries once they go back home. An ILO campaign is aiming to change that perception.

  2. Video

    Fighting Human Trafficking in Moldova

    December 18, 2008

    Living in a poor rural area of Moldova, 17-year old Maria grabbed the chance for a better life when a family friend promised her lucrative work abroad. Instead she found herself doing forced labour on a farm in Russia, with no passport or money to get back home. Breaking this cycle of human trafficking will involve improving decent work prospects for Moldavians at home, as ILO TV reports.

What's new

  1. Ukraine to Improve Its Migration Governance

    24 June 2014

    On June 24 the Conference ‘Decent work for the migrant workers’ summarized the achievements of the Project ‘Effective Governance of Labour Migration and its Skills Dimensions’. Drawing to a close in June 2014, the project resulted in better understanding of labour migration and its governance. Its final conference gathered experts in Kyiv to discuss further steps to be taken by the state to guarantee the right and integration of migrants into the Ukrainian society.

  2. New ILO study to help the reintegration of return labour migrants in the Republic of Moldova

    20 March 2014

    More than one third of return migrants are unemployed or work in seasonal jobs in Moldova. Young return migrants are the most vulnerable on the labour market, says a new ILO study presented yesterday.

  3. Knowledge on migration issues has been increased in Ukraine and Moldova by a recently ending project

    04 December 2013

    After almost three years of implementation, the project “Effective Governance of Labour Migration and its Skill Dimensions” draws to a close in December 2013 resulting better understanding of migration issues.