Labour migration

Today, there are an estimated 232 million migrant workers around the world. Globalization, demographic shifts, conflicts, income inequalities and climate change will encourage ever more workers and their families to cross borders in search of employment and security. Migrant workers contribute to growth and development in their countries of destination, while countries of origin greatly benefit from their remittances and the skills acquired during their migration experience.

Yet, the migration process implies complex challenges in terms of governance, migrant workers' protection, migration and development linkages, and international cooperation. The ILO works to forge policies to maximize the benefits of labour migration for all those involved.

In the spotlight

  1. Discussion paper

    Promoting decent work for migrant workers

    This paper proposes a number of indicators to measure target 8.8 on “protecting labour rights and promoting safe and secure working environments of all workers, including migrant workers, particularly women migrants, and those in precarious employment” of the Sustainable Development Goals. It was presented at the Coordination Meeting on International Migration, New York, 12-13 February 2015. 

Project in the spotlight

  1. Migrant Domestic Workers

    Global Action Programme on Migrant Domestic Workers and their Families

    This project seeks to promote the human and labour rights of migrant domestic workers worldwide by addressing the challenges that make them particularly vulnerable to exploitation and abuse.

Policies and programmes

  1. Good practices database

    Our database provides a non-exhaustive list of current good practices implemented at the country level.

UN-wide cooperation

  1. ILO and the Global Migration Group

    Improving global migration governance

    The Global Migration Group (GMG) consists of 16 international organizations that work in cooperation to address migration issues, worldwide. This year the ILO assumes chairmanship.

Focus on

  1. Social protection for migrant workers

    Although the 105 million migrant workers worldwide contribute fully to the economies of their host and home countries, migrant workers are among the most excluded from even basic coverage by social protection instruments and schemes, in particular undocumented migrant workers. Key principles are laid down in the ILO Conventions and Recommendations which make provision for the social security rights of migrant workers and their families.