Policy Brief: Lessons from Korea’s Employment Permit System - Bilateral Arrangement of Temporary Labor Migration

The report outlined in this policy brief recognizes the wide spectrum of migration-related issues, and sets them in a clear framework focused on three separate policy objectives: control, co-development, and co-existence. Policies that support control (e.g., building walls to prevent illegal entry into a country) should not be mixed with efforts to promote co-existence (e.g., measures to provid... view more


Policy responses to migratory movement must be tailored to their specific contexts and type while clearly reflecting the government agenda of the receiving country and acknowledging that of the sending country.

This Bite+ explores the three policy objectives underlying the migration policies and management practices commonly observed across receiving countries: (i) control, (ii) co-development, and (iii) co-existence.


This Bite+ elaborates on the Employment Permit System (EPS), Korea’s flagship temporary labor migration program, which offers a model of global good practices in facilitating the movement of low-skilled workers.


Despite its successes, a few challenges remain to be addressed to bolster the EPS program in meeting the needs of migrants and their employers. This Bite+ highlights the important lessons from the EPS program in both receiving and sending countries.