Gulf Migrants Amid the COVID-19 Pandemic: Lessons for the Global South
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As the COVID-19 pandemic unfolds, countries in the global South face an unprecedented challenge of holding back the spiralling COVID-19 cases. The challenge has become even more formidable in containing the virus among migrant workers throughout the Arab Gulf countries. This study explores the patterns of COVID-19 infections, identifies the challenges that the major receiving countries have encountered, and finally reviews the governments’ responses to contain the infections among migrant workers. Empirically, this research focuses on the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries, considered a major destination for Southeast Asian and South Asian migrant workers. The study reports that the GCC countries have been relatively successful in containing the pandemic due to governments’ proactive measures. The paper identifies several best practices that may be replicated in other migrant-receiving countries in the global South. This paper suggests that the COVID-19 pandemic exposes the need for better accommodation and healthcare policy for migrant workers throughout the Gulf states.