Return migration to Pakistan is diverse. It ranges from return mobilities of naturalized citizens and those born abroad to so-called ‘voluntary assisted returns’ and deportations of migrants without regular status. Pakistan receives returnees from the Middle East, as well as from Europe and North America, which reflects broader Pakistani migration patterns. This policy brief explores the multiplicity of return migration to Pakistan. From a return destination perspective, it presents some of the dilemmas faced when governing return migration.
- Return migration to Pakistan is extremely diverse; legal status and citizenship are important distinctions among returnees.
- Pakistanis abroad account for about 4 per cent of the total Pakistani population of 185 million. Most migrate to the Middle East. Remit-tances are key to migration’s salience as a societal concern in Pakistan.
- Pakistan as a return destination is characterized by instability and socioeconomic stagnation but also future potential.
- The governing of return migration to Pakistan is complicated by the multiplicity of return.