COVID-19 and the Intensification of the GCC Workforce Nationalization Policies

Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) governments have intensified their efforts to nationalize their workforce in response to the COVID-19 crisis and the resulting economic contraction. These policies will have a wide-ranging negative impact on migrants and will affect GCC labour markets more broadly. This paper examines how to strike a balance between the implementation of workforce nationalization policies and reducing harm for migrants given the lack of social protection mechanisms.