Family members who have moved to the city receive food, mainly potatoes, vegetables, fruits and meat, so that many people do not have to spend much money on food. In turn, the new city citizens send money back home.

Changing rural household structures

In terms of its economy, Kyrgyzstan is divided into north and south. The northern part with Bishkek is richer than the southern part of the country. The south faces high population pressure and shortage of land, and in general is more rural and dependent on agriculture than the north. This is reflected in migration numbers, as the share of households with at least one migrant is highest in these southern provinces, at 34 per cent for Batken, 29 per cent for Jalalabat and 25 per cent for Osh. In the northern provinces this share of households is only between 1.5 per cent and 4 per cent. In the southern provinces, with their high share of rural inhabitants, many households depend on migration in order to satisfy their daily needs for food.

Migrants from Kyrgyzstan are mostly younger than 30 years and are mainly men, although women are catching up.