Drastic fall in the number of Indian workers immigrating to Gulf

Posted on July 25, 2017

Among the crowd of Indian workers, Gulf nations had always been a magnetic pull. Each near thousands of workers immigrated to Gulf with hopes of better career prospects & luxury lifestyle. Unfortunately, since 2014 the tables turned down. Statistics show that from 2014 to 2016, India recorded a drastic decline (approx. 34.6%) in the number of registered & skilled workers moving to Gulf nations. This has eventually led to the overall dip in remittances or private transfers made by Indians working in Gulf- confirms a report by Zee News:

 “As per information provided by the Reserve Bank of India, the overall remittances/private transfers made by Indians working abroad, all over the world, including Gulf countries, as recorded in India’s balance of payments statistics has fallen slightly from US$ 69,819 million in 2014-15 to US$ 65,592 million in 2015-16”

Answering to a question at Rajya Sabha, the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) highlighted a fact that in 2014, six most popular & widely chosen Gulf countries- United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Bahrain & Oman witnessed immigration of nearly 775,845 registered workers. But, in 2016 the figures fell to 507,296. Similarly, a report by Times of India states that Saudi Arabia solely witnessed a dip by 50% from 2014-2016. According to TOI statistics, nearly 329,882 workers moved to Saudi Arabia in 2014 whereas by 2016, the numbers dropped as low as 165,356.

What are the reasons?

Though Gulf nations remain a favorite in the employment areas, there are several reasons that people are giving a second thought on choosing to immigrate.  It is believed that the economic slowdown in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) caused due to low oil prices could be one of the major reasons for this shift. Simultaneously, the Islamic State disruptions (especially in Syria & Iraq) also add to a big reason.

While these are the reasons of the past, it is predicated that the recently imposed fresh taxes or VAT will hinder thousands of “immigration to Gulf” plans this year and onward.  In order to increase its revenue in the milieu of decreased oil prices, the government of Saudi Arabia levied a dependent tax on immigrants residing in the nation from July 1, 2017; which, certainly would affect immigrants to a great extent.


Wondering whether there is any best & easy alternative to Gulf immigration? Canada & Australia are among the best nations of 2017 for immigration & a better decision than Gulf. These countries have huge employment opportunities, easy immigration process & plenty of benefits for immigrants. Ask Our Experts for complete details on this.