There has been huge exodus of migration (both internal and international) in Nepal in recent time. The rural villages are ‘dying’ with only old people, children and women are left in the village. 27 of 75 districts has seen decline in the population in 2011 census as compared to 2001 census. Nepal Living Standard Survey 2011 shows that 53 percent of household has at least one absentee members. This has huge impact on the rural development. The mobility is highest among youths. The trend is ever increasing. The youth migration is increasingly linked to youth unemployment. The youth unemployment is very high in Nepal (19.2 percent) as compared to the general unemployment rate of 3.1 percent. This huge exodus of the youth has huge dynamic impact on the economy (both in positive and negative ways). So it is essential to understand why youth are interested to migrate.

The purpose of this study is to empirically investigate the determinants of the work-related migration aspirations among youths in Nepal. Among various determinants of the migration aspirations, I investigate how employment status and type (quality) of the employment affects migration aspirations in detail.  This is more relevant in case of Nepal as where most of the labour migration taking place from Nepal is unskilled and semi-skilled. Whether it is better job opportunities that are attacking people or its compulsion that detrimental labour market prospect that are pushing people for migration. Apart from that the aspiration reflected by youth may represents their optimism or pessimism of the future prospect in their home country. This should be seen in the light of potential future migration and is related to the urbanization and rural development.

We use data from School-to-work-transition (SWTS) survey from International Organization of Labour (ILO), conducted in 2013, covering the youth of age 15-29 year-olds. The survey contains the information on various aspects of labour market conditions, history of economic activities and perceptions and aspirations of youths. Using multinomial logistic regression, we analyse the various determinants of the work-related youth migration aspirations. We analyse baseline model for whole sample including both employed and unemployed youths and two separate analyses for the employed and unemployed youths.

The study highlights effects of various individual characteristics, quality of job and personal perceptions in forming work-related migration aspiration formation among youths of Nepal. The study shows that employed youths have migration aspirations similar to that of unemployed youths. This study also highlights the quality of the job in migration aspiration formations. The findings of the study have policy implications.