About 4 million Venezuelans — over 10 percent of the population — have left the country in search of better living conditions in the last two decades, Bahar said, citing others' estimates.
In comparison, "the estimates of refugees who left Syria during the war account for about 5 million individuals," he noted. The latest United Nations data indicates there are currently 5.5 million Syrian refugees.
Bahar said he expects Venzeula's figure to increase "very rapidly" and eventually exceed that of the Middle Eastern state.
"The situation on the ground is deteriorating by the minute and the lack of food and medicine in Venezuela will probably get much worse," he said.
Venezuelans first began leaving the country in droves under the late President Hugo Chavez, but the situation intensified once President Nicolas Maduro took power in 2013. Corruption and authoritarianism under his watch have thrown the country into economic free fall. These have resulted in political persecution, a cash crunch and hyperinflation that hit the purchasing power of ordinary citizens.
Around five hundred thousand Venezuelans have left since 2016, according to the Council on Foreign Relations.
"A sharp deterioration in food supply, an epidemic, or an explosion of violence" could transform human outflows into a major crisis, the Washington-based group said in a recent report, echoing Bahar's views.