Repatriation of Refugees from Arab Conflicts: Conditions, Costs and Scenarios for Reconstruction - Economic Research Forum (ERF)

The prospects for early re­patriation of refugees who have fled conflicts in Arab countries in recent years do not yet look promising. Nevertheless, not only have discussions about repatriation started at both national and international, but there is also a steady, though still limited, stream of refugees in neighbouring countries trickling back to their war-ravaged homes. With the doors of naturalization and resettlement all but closed and the socio-economic situation in host countries weakening, the refugees have found themselves caught in very difficult circum­stances.

While mass repatriation at this stage remains premature for all war-torn countries, the current situation dictates that we recognize and unpack the issue of repatriation in all its dimen­sions, so that if and when the time comes, informed actions can be taken. This would help to support the most positive outcomes – pri­marily for the refugees, but also for other stakeholders, such as host communities and those left behind in the conflict countries.

This is what this year’s

FEMISE-ERF Euromed Report on Repatriation of Refugees from Arab Conflicts: Conditions, Costs and Scenarios for Reconstruction* 

is addressing in its four chapters. The authors look into the characteristics of the refugees and the conditions affecting their decisions to return. This overview is followed by an analysis of the possible political settlement scenarios and reconstructions’ potentials, with a focus on the possible role of the international community. The authors then analyse the economic costs of conflicts as well as post-conflict growth scenarios. The report concludes by highlighting the main findings and providing policy insights into how to address this issue to ensure a safe, sustainable and dignified return of refugees to their home countries.


Contributors to the report : Ibrahim Elbadawi, Belal Fallah, Jala Youssef, Maryse Louis, Roger Albinyana, Samir Makdisi, Semih Tumen


* This report received financial support from the European Union through the FEMISE project on “Support to Economic Research, studies and dia­logues of the Euro-Mediterranean Partnership”. Any views expressed in this report are the sole responsibility of the authors.

Research Fellows

Ibrahim Elbadawi

Managing Director, Economic Research Forum


Belal Fallah

Palestine Polytechnic University


Maryse Louis

FEMISE, General Manager

Senior Associates

Samir Makdisi

Professor Emeritus of Economics, American University of Beirut


Jala Youssef

World Bank

Research Fellows

Semih Tumen

Associate Professor of Economics, TED University, Turkey



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