CRRC: Why do so many Armenians leave Armenia?

migration data charts and tables

57% of Armenians want to temporarily leave Armenia, while this number is 45% in Georgia and 47% in Azerbaijan for their respective populations (See Figure 1), according to data from the 2009 Caucasus Barometer (CB). The study furthermore indicates, that 25% percent of Armenians want to permanently leave Armenia, while this number is 11% and 16% for Georgia and Azerbaijan, respectively.

According to data provided by the National Statistical Agencies of Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia, the 2009 migration balances in these countries were -25, +1 and +34 people (in thousands), respectively (See Figure 2).

Thus, the number of people who left Armenia exceeded the number of those who entered by 25,000.

In contrast, the number of people who entered neighboring Georgia and Azerbaijan was higher than the number of people who left these countries.

Why do so many Armenians leave Armenia?

There are two factors I’d like to highlight on Figure 2 (data compiled from various sources, including Freedom House (2010), Transparency International (2010), World Bank (2009), National Statistical Services of Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia).

1. Armenians tend to more often have friends and family abroad, who tell them about

2. Armenians are more likely to feel rejected and experience a general feeling of emptiness.



3 thoughts on “CRRC: Why do so many Armenians leave Armenia?

  1. I agree with point 1, but I do not understand point 2.
    Why would Armenians feel rejected in Armenia? Feeling as an outcast anywhere else I understand: my family left Georgia for this reason. But what you are saying is different. Armenians belong to Armenia, don’t you agree?

    • Mara,

      it’s a small country with very few opportunities for personal or professional growth for the people. On top of that, you have a handful of families controlling most of the political and economic scene. So anyone would feel empty and rejected. I bigger countries, even if the chances of making it big are slim, the opportunities of growth are there.

  2. I agree. The political system in Armenia is corrupt. Only the powerful have opportunities in such system that exists in Armenia. What’s left for the rest of the society? The powerless are either choosing the poverty, accepting the destinies of patriotism, or leaving the country feeling deep disappointment – feeling of that no one cares. They feel exactly “rejected” because no effort or talent is valued in there. In seems like it’s a country that accepts the dollar bill as its higher power, and creates a bitter oligarchy. Therefore, people leave one after the other, through their connections: friends, relatives who already left and found that place that satisfies their needs and give some opportunities. I absolutely agree. I felt that way. That’s why I left.

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