It is believed that for the development of a country, the youth play a major role. Pakistan is one of those countries that has a large number of youth where the youth constitutes upto almost 60% of its total population. It is no less than a blessing for Pakistan to have 60 per cent youth of its total population.
In other countries, such a high percentage of youth is considered the backbone of a country to take the country to its peak, but Pakistan is one of the unfortunate countries which does not take benefit of its youth and wastes it such talented and well-skilled youth.
According to the Bureau of Emigration and Overseas Employment, around 450,110 Pakistanis left Pakistan in the first seven months of 2023 to find job opportunities elsewhere.
These include 12,787 highly qualified, 26,405 highly skilled, 164,155 skilled workers and 198,000 unskilled Pakistanis who have supposedly moved abroad.
Last year, more than 832,000 Pakistanis left the country which is the highest number of emigration since 2016. This is the official emigration number excluding those who moved abroad to pursue education.
Pakistan, rather than getting the benefit of its youth's power, relinquishes it from year to year. Recently, a group of our classmates wrapped up a survey at our university by asking students a question: what would they do after graduation? Most of the students answered that their first priority is to move abroad right after graduation.
It is assumed that most students study English for CSS, but in reality they study English to move abroad easily. Most of my classmates are waiting for the completion of their degree, and right after graduation, they will move abroad. These youths are considered the future of Pakistan, but they are dispirited by the current political and economic scenario of Pakistan and want to move abroad either in adopting illegal way or a legal way.
But this is not a new phenomenon for Pakistanis to move abroad. The flow of migration has been strong since the 1970s, but the more concerning thing is the loss of highly qualified professionals consisting of doctors, engineers, professors and more.
Things have changed in the sense that now even those people leave Pakistan who have small businesses here are keen on leaving. After F.Sc, one of my school friends set up a small business in his hometown, but now he is moving abroad. When I asked him why he doesn't run his business here, he said that the price of everything is sky high which meant he was unable to sustain the business.
Every year many students go abroad and complete their education there, but when their degree is complete, they don't come back. They fear unemployment here and settle there. The unstable economic and political situation, unemployment and inflation compel the youth to move abroad. Every year our talent leaves to live a life of dignity and a happy life.
Before it's too late, the government should tap into its youth's potential and acquire benefits from their skills.