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Zohry, Ayman
Year of Publication: 
Series/Report no.: 
DIIS Working Paper 2006:18
In this paper, I explore characteristics of Egyptian irregular migrants to Europe and reasons of irregular migration from the point of departure through a field survey in some Egyptian villages known of sending irregular – as well as regular - migrants to Italy and France (mainly). The fieldwork was carried out in eight Egyptian governorates to identify the push factors in the country, with particular attention to the dynamics governing the irregular migratory flows from Egypt to the EU. The research focuses on the broad dimensions of migration, both legal and illegal, towards the northern shores of the Mediterranean. The research further tries to define the socio-political and economic environment in which the decision to migrate mature. The survey gathered information about the level of awareness of potential migrants about irregular migration and migrants smuggling from Egypt. The results of the filed survey indicates that the vast majority of youth who want to migrate to Europe as well as current migrants intend to return to Egypt after a temporary stay in the countries of destination. Inspite of the fact that the legal framework for migrants to the Arab Gulf countries – the traditional destination of temporary Egyptian migration - is very different to the legal framework in Europe, these findings suggest that the Egyptian migration to Europe is a re-production of the pattern of Egyptian migration to the Arab Gulf countries, where young males migrate to achieve specific financial goals and then they return to Egypt. With respect to the reason for migration, the study indicated that the main reason behind migration is the lack of employment job opportunities in Egypt, especially among fresh graduates and the low wages and salaries in Egypt.
Document Type: 
Working Paper

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