In the latest report, the monthly statistical magazine “International Information” published, on Wednesday, figures that reveal a “leap” in immigration, based on the movement of entry and exit of Lebanese issued by the General Directorate of Public Security.
The data revealed that the number of immigrants and travelers from Lebanon in 2021 amounted to 79,134 people, compared to 17,721 people in 2020, an increase of 61,413 people, or 346 percent.
Thus, the year 2021 will have recorded the largest number of immigrants and travelers during the past five years, while the period between 2017 and 2021 recorded the number of immigrants and travelers amounting to 215,653 people.
In an interview with “Sky News Arabia”, researcher in the “International Information” magazine, Muhammad Shams El-Din, said that the terms “immigrants and travelers” include those who left Lebanon with the intention of settling outside it, whether through immigration without return or residence and work in another country for a long period.
The magazine pointed out that “the worsening economic crisis is pushing thousands of Lebanese to emigrate and travel in search of job opportunities or improving life conditions that have become impossible, in light of the lack of public services such as electricity, water, transportation, high prices and the erosion of the purchasing power of salaries and wages in the public and private sectors.”
determined to leave
In the same context, the Lebanese people, who were surveyed by “Sky News Arabia”, expressed their views of their desire to leave their country in order to work outside it, after they added ways at home.
Shadi, 40, who works as an employee in one of the institutions in Beirut, says: “When I got married 12 years ago, all my dreams and ambitions were linked to Lebanon. I dreamed of building a family, developing my business, and securing a decent life for my children, like any head of a normal family anywhere in the world.”
Then he adds: “But it seems that these natural and basic dreams have become forbidden to us in Lebanon,” justifying the idea of emigrating from his homeland to another place he has not yet determined.
“I want to migrate to any country where I can only feel safe,” says Hana, who is in her fourth year of engineering.
In the same vein, mother Haifa talks about her concern about what is to come, saying: “I do not want to fall asleep daily on the nightmares of bullets and memories of the civil war, and I wake up to the screams of politicians and the control of banks over the misery of my life.”
motives for immigration
The economic expert, Professor Jassem Ajaqa, says that “immigration is a clear product of the Lebanese reality, whether on the political or economic level, especially in the past two years.”
He added to “Sky News Arabia”: “Migration was intense and the most difficult thing was that it included the youth group in the first place, and according to preliminary information, more than 70 percent of the immigrants are from the youth segment, and this element is essential for the country to rise economically.”
Ajaqa continued, “I do not know how Lebanon can recover from its crisis, even with the help of the International Monetary Fund and the international community, if there is no labor capable of advancing the country. Continuing immigration at this pace will lead the country to a great void in the labor market, and it will be forced to bring in manpower.” A foreigner may not be as qualified as the Lebanese youth.”
The researcher added that there is “a crime committed against the youth and the Lebanese economy, as a result of the lack of agreement on a solution to get out of the crisis and sign an aid program with the International Monetary Fund.”
Ajaga believes that “this confusion is political par excellence,” noting that these crises are inevitably addressed through the gateway to politics, whether it comes to finding an economic solution or making young people refrain from leaving, in order to contribute to their country’s economy.