People still want to move to Australia, New Zealand and Singapore in Asia

Michelle Ann Kwara

People’s desire to migrate has cooled globally, according to pollster Gallup.

However, if everyone who wanted to move did move to where they wanted, populations would still grow in the Americas, Europe, Middle East and North Africa but shrink in sub-Saharan Africa and Asia, Gallup said, citing its Potential Net Migration Index (PNMI), a survey undertaken between 2010 and 2012.

The most popular countries to migrate to include Saudi Arabia with a score of 218 per cent, Kuwait with 198 per cent, and Switzerland and Australia each with 136 per cent.

In Asia-Pacific, people still want to move to Australia, New Zealand and Singapore. However, Singapore has fallen from the top spot in Asia-Pacific to third place in the 2010-2012 period, after Australia and New Zealand.

According to the survey report, Singapore has an estimated PNMI score of 129 per cent, meaning that if all adults who desired to move in and out Singapore did so, the adult population would still increase by 129 per cent.

There was a decline in desire for people to migrate to developed Asian countries, and, as in previous years, PNMI scores across developing Asia are negative. China and India, two of the world’s most populous countries, registered at -6 per cent and -4 per cent respectively.

Gallup also said that the declining scores in many countries reflect the decline in worldwide desire to migrate, as a result of the global economic downturn. As economic conditions improve, the idea of migration may gain traction again.

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