APPENDIX I Q&A with William Gois, Regional Coordinator, Migrant Forum in Asia Q: How many migrant workers are there around the world? How many are estimated to be suffering from wage theft amid the COVID-19 pandemic? A: There were more than 164 million migrant workers around the world as of 2017, according to data from the International Labour Organization (ILO). We believe this number is much higher today as many countries around the world have increased their demand for migrant workers in recent years. More than 40% of all the workers in Arab States were migrants, according to ILO’s 2017 data, making them the regions with the highest share of migrants in the labour force. However, the COVID-19 pandemic has caused unprecedented disruptions. Up to millions suffered from wage theft. Q: What is wage theft? How serious is the situation? Wage theft means migrant workers were faced with job loss or non-payment of wages, forced by employers to take unpaid leave or reduced wages, sometimes below the minimum wage, confined in poor living conditions, and with little or no engagement in the work options before them. Many migrant workers struggled with the dilemma of exercising their right to return in these circumstances, while others remain stranded in cities without access to services or support, or in border areas, living in precarious conditions posing as quarantine facilities. The Institute for Human Rights and Business (IHRB) recognizes wage theft as a part and process of modern slavery.