Who wants to migrate?

Gallup World Poll says that 16% of the world’s population wants to migrate internationally and permanently. In these countries, at least half of those polled say they want to: Sierra Leone (73%), Lebanon (63%), Honduras 56%), Gabon (55%), Afghanistan (53%), Republic of the Congo (53%), Ghana (53%), Nigeria (53%), and Albania (50%) and Dominican Republic (50%).

On a regional rather than individual country basis, Gallup’s 2018 poll reported that 33% of Sub-Sahara Africans want to migrate and 27% of Latin Americans and Caribbeans.

The United States (by a lot) followed by Canada, Germany and Spain are the most desired destinations.

Nigeria stands out among the countries with a high level of desire to out-migrate. It is the only one of these countries where a significant absolute number of well formally educated persons will predictably out-migrate. Nigeria will remain for some time Sub-Sahara Africa’s main exporter of human talent. I have posted several times on the exceptionally high educational attainment of Nigerians in the United States, including here.

The African Polling Institute in 2020 found that Canada was the most desired destination. About 150,000 Nigerians live in Canada (vs. 400,000 in the U.S., with a almost 10 times Canada’s population).

The reasons Nigerians give for migrating to Canada are better career opportunities (75%), heightened insecurity and violence (60%), the desire to provide a better future for their children (55%), for further education (40%), and perceived poor governance in Nigeria (35%).  The education and skill levels of Nigerians who move to Canada are high, reflected in their entry method: the Federal Skilled Workers Program known as Express Entry (56%) and Studentship / Postgraduate Work Permit (25%).






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