Reintegration of Returnee Migrant Workers Project

The project will contribute to ensure migrant workers benefit fully from their migration experience by supporting the reintegration of returnee migrant workers in Nepal. It will work with the Nepali Government to provide reintegration services and support policy development to anchor them in the federal structure. Switzerland has a key interest that the potential of migration for development is fully used and is well positioned to engage on the topic, given its track record in migration in Nepal. 

Country/region Topic Period Budget
Vocational training
Employment & economic development
Labour migration
Vocational training
Employment creation
01.01.2021 - 31.05.2027
CHF  8’100’000
Background While labour migration is a central factor of Nepal’s social and economic development, many migrant workers and their families face significant social costs. As a result, the Government of Nepal has repeatedly called upon migrant workers to return and find employment in country. There is however no systematic support for returnee migrant workers to reintegrate more easily and allow the country to fully benefit from economic and social remittances that migrants acquire during their foreign employment. There is no policy framework on reintegration, clarifying the roles and responsibilities of different spheres of government, nor data on returnee migrant workers. The government’s efforts to create jobs for unemployed people are insufficient and local governments, which are in the lead to support the reintegration process, do not have the capacities and resources to initiate any comprehensive reintegration programmes. The importance of reintegrating returnee migrant workers has become more visible in the CoVID-19 pandemic, which has pushed many migrant workers to return to Nepal due to loss of income and job in the destination countries.
Objectives Returnee migrant workers have re-established themselves in Nepal and actively participate in social, cultural, economic and political life.
Target groups

Primary beneficiaries are men and women returnee migrant workers and their families (approximatively 33’500 persons through different types of interventions).

Secondary beneficiaries are the federal, provincial and local governments and service providers (private sector, cooperatives, civil society organisations).

Medium-term outcomes

Outcome 1:    Men and women returnee migrant workers use their migration experience to improve their economic situation;

Outcome 2:    The three spheres of government implement effective mechanisms to provide reintegration services to returnee migrant workers.


Expected results:  

Output 1.1    Migrant workers define a return and reintegration plan with their family prior to their departure for foreign employment;

Output 1.2    Returnee migrant workers have acquired skills relevant to enter domestic labour market;

Output 1.3    Returnee migrant workers have acquired knowhow to establish small businesses;

Output 1.4    Returnee migrant workers in distress have access to social support services; 

Output 1.5    Migrant cooperatives respond efficiently to the needs of returnee migrant workers.

Output 2.1    Local governments have the capacities to provide needs based reintegration support services;

Output 2.2    Provincial Governments have clarity on their roles and responsiblities in relation to migration and reintegration;

Output 2.3    The three spheres of government coordinate together for reintegration support services;

Output 2.4    The three spheres of government partner with the private sector and CSOs on reintegration support services.

Results from previous phases:   A set of baseline information has been collected during the opening phase, however, a comprehensive baseline will be established at the beginning of the first phase. This also because project implementation sites will be chosen in collaboration with the government at a later stage.

Directorate/federal office responsible SDC
Project partners Contract partner
Private sector
Swiss Non-profit Organisation
United Nations Organization (UNO)
  • HELVETAS Swiss Intercooperation
  • International Labor Organization
  • Foreign private sector North

Coordination with other projects and actors

Synergies with SDC projects: Safer Migration, Enhanced Skills for Sustainable and Rewarding Employment, National Vocational Qualification System, Nepal Agricultural Market Development Programme,  and Province Support Program.

Other initiatives: Prime Minister Employment Programme

Coordination with major donors: World Bank, UKAID

Budget Current phase Swiss budget CHF    8’100’000 Swiss disbursement to date CHF    4’282’309
Project phases Phase 1 01.01.2021 - 31.05.2027   (Current phase)