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Statistics on International Migration

Statistics on International Migration


Migration is a powerful driver and important consequence of economic, political and social change. Because of its great impact on societies, migration needs to be adequately measured and understood. Reliable statistical data is the key to the basic understanding of this important phenomenon. Yet, in many countries, even the most general statistics on migration are incomplete, out-of-date or do not exist. Improvement in this area requires knowledge of the principles of collecting, compiling and analyzing migration statistics. Likewise, policymakers and other users need to be aware of the definitions and measurement issues related to the data to be able to interpret them.

The 2006 High-level Dialogue on International Migration and Development at the United Nations General Assembly concluded that international migration could play an important role in national development, provided that it was supported by the right set of strategies and policies. This has led to the increase in international efforts related to migration and its measurement. The present guide was prepared under the responsibility of the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe in the framework of the project “Strengthening national capacities to deal with international migration: maximizing development benefits and minimizing negative impacts”. The project involved all five regional commissions of the United Nations and was financed from the United Nations Development Account.

The guide is intended for practitioners and professionals whose work is related to migration and migration statistics. It focuses on the specific context of migration processes in Eastern Europe and Central Asia. We expect that the practical examples and international recommendations presented herein stimulate interest and improve understanding and facilitate production, dissemination and use of statistics on international migration.


Statistics on International Migration A Practical Guide for Countries of Eastern Europe and Central Asia - English version (15 MB)

Статистика международной миграции: Практическое руководство для стран Восточной Европы и Центральной Азии - Русская версия (13 MB)