African migration : is the continent really on the move ?*
–-> La migration africaine : s’agit-il vraiment d’un « continent en
mouvement » ?*
African migration is often perceived as massive and increasing, mainly directed toward Europe, and driven by poverty and violence (Lessault and Beauchemin 2009). However, these assumptions are not based on empirical evidence. We now have a much better ability to assess the volume and geographical orientation of African emigration, thanks to the Global Bilateral Migration Database (GBMD) on the presence of emigrants abroad (migration stocks; World Bank and University of Sussex ).¹ African migration is first and foremost intra-continental. In 2000, 75 percent of all African migrants lived in another African country, while 16 percent were in Europe, 5 percent in America, 4 percent in Oceania and 0.3 per cent in Asia. In fact, African extra-continental emigrant rates seem to be the lowest of all world regions.