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A global view of cross-border migration
di Giovanni, Julian; Levchenko, Andrei A.; Ortega, Francesc
Universitat Pompeu Fabra. Departament d'Economia i Empresa
This paper evaluates the global welfare impact of observed levels of migration using a quantitativemulti-sector model of the world economy calibrated to aggregate and firm-level data.Our framework features cross-country labor productivity differences, international trade, remittances,and a heterogeneous workforce. We compare welfare under the observed levels ofmigration to a no-migration counterfactual. In the long run, natives in countries that receiveda lot of migration -such as Canada or Australia- are better o due to greater product varietyavailable in consumption and as intermediate inputs. In the short run the impact of migrationon average welfare in these countries is close to zero, while the skilled and unskilled nativestend to experience welfare changes of opposite signs. The remaining natives in countries withlarge emigration flows -such as Jamaica or El Salvador- are also better off due to migration,but for a different reason: remittances. The welfare impact of observed levels of migration issubstantial, at about 5 to 10% for the main receiving countries and about 10% in countries withlarge incoming remittances. Our results are robust to accounting for imperfect transferabilityof skills, selection into migration, and imperfect substitution between natives and immigrants.
02-04-2014
Macroeconomics and International Economics
migration
remittances
international trade
welfare
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