Within Southeast Asia, irregular migration is mainly driven by economic disparities. Even though borders are porous, UNODC estimates that over 80% of irregular migrants rely on smugglers. Around half a million migrants mainly from Myanmar (but also from Cambodia and Lao PDR) are estimated to be smuggled to Thailand each year. Fees for smuggling services are low, ranging from a few dollars to a few hundred dollars, meaning it is often cheaper to use smuggling services than regular labour migration systems.
What we do:
UNODC enhances the capacity of law enforcement agencies to effectively identify professional smuggling networks and combat the smuggling of migrants by: