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Labor Mobility in an Enlarged European Union

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  • Kahanec, Martin

    ()
    (Central European University)

Abstract

The 2004 and 2007 enlargements of the EU extended the freedom of movement to workers from the twelve new member states mainly from Central Eastern Europe. This study summarizes and comparatively evaluates what we know about mobility in an enlarged Europe to date. The pre-enlargement fears of free labor mobility proved to be unjustified. No significant detrimental effects on the receiving countries’ labor markets have been documented, nor has there been any discernible welfare shopping. Rather, there appear to have been positive effects on EU’s productivity. The sending countries face some risks of losing their young and skilled labor force, but free labor mobility has relieved them of some redundant labor and the associated fiscal burden. They have also profited from remittances. Of key importance for the sending countries is to reap the benefits from brain gain and brain circulation in an enlarged EU. For the migrants the benefits in terms of better career prospects have with little doubt exceeded any pecuniary and non-pecuniary costs of migration. In conclusion, the freedom of movement in the EU provides for a triple-win situation for the receiving and sending countries as well as for migrants themselves, provided the risks are contained and efficient brain circulation is achieved.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 6485.

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Length: 50 pages
Date of creation: Apr 2012
Date of revision:
Publication status: forthcoming in: International Handbook of the Economics of Migration
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp6485

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Keywords: transitional arrangements; free movement of workers; labor mobility; EU enlargement; migration; EU labor markets; new member states; European Union;

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References

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  1. Barbara Dietz, 2009. "Migration, remittances and the current economic crisis: implications for Central and Eastern Europe," Memoranda - Policy Papers 42, Institut für Ost- und Südosteuropaforschung (Institute for East and South-East European Studies).
  2. Kahanec, Martin & Zaiceva, Anzelika & Zimmermann, Klaus F., 2009. "Lessons from Migration after EU Enlargement," IZA Discussion Papers 4230, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  3. Martin Kahanec & Anna Myung-Hee Kim & Klaus F. Zimmermann, 2013. "Pitfalls of immigrant inclusion into the European welfare state," International Journal of Manpower, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 34(1), pages 39-55, January.
  4. repec:nsr:niesrd:379 is not listed on IDEAS
  5. David Blanchflower & Jumana Saleheen & Chris Shadforth, 2007. "The impact of the recent migration from Eastern Europe on the UK economy," Discussion Papers 17, Monetary Policy Committee Unit, Bank of England.
  6. Sinn, Hans-Werner & Ochel, Wolfgang, 2003. "Social Union, Convergence and Migration," Munich Reprints in Economics 948, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
  7. Giulietti, Corrado & Guzi, Martin & Kahanec, Martin & Zimmermann, Klaus F., 2011. "Unemployment Benefits and Immigration: Evidence from the EU," IZA Discussion Papers 6075, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  8. Kahanec, Martin & Zimmermann, Klaus F., 2008. "International Migration, Ethnicity and Economic Inequality," IZA Discussion Papers 3450, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  9. Hans-Werner Sinn & Gebhard Flaig & Martin Werding & Sonja Munz & Nicola Düll & Herbert Hofmann, 2001. "EU-Erweiterung und Arbeitskräftemigration : Wege zu einer schrittweisen Annäherung der Arbeitsmärkte," ifo Beiträge zur Wirtschaftsforschung, Ifo Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, number 2, 8.
  10. Benoit A. Delbecq & Brigitte S. Waldorf, 2010. "Going West In The European Union:Migration And Eu Enlargement," Working Papers 10-4, Purdue University, College of Agriculture, Department of Agricultural Economics.
  11. Bauer, Thomas K. & Zimmermann, Klaus F., 1999. "Report No. 3: Assessment of Possible Migration Pressure and its Labour Market Impact Following EU Enlargement to Central and Eastern Europe," IZA Research Reports 3, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  12. Bonin, Holger & Eichhorst, Werner & Florman, Christer & Hansen, Mette Okkels & Skiöld, Lena & Stuhler, Jan & Tatsiramos, Konstantinos & Thomasen, Henrik & Zimmermann, Klaus F., 2008. "Report No. 19: Geographic Mobility in the European Union: Optimising its Economic and Social Benefits," IZA Research Reports 19, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Kahanec, Martin, 2012. "Report No. 49: Skilled Labor Flows: Lessons from the European Union," IZA Research Reports 49, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  2. Martin Kahanec, 2013. "Skilled Labor Flows: Lessons from the European Union," Research Reports 1, Central European Labour Studies Institute (CELSI).
  3. Brian Fabo & Martin Kahanec, 2013. "Migration strategies of the crisis-stricken youth in an enlarged European Union," Discussion Papers 6, Central European Labour Studies Institute (CELSI).
  4. Simonetta Longhi & Magdalena Rokicka, 2012. "European immigrants in the UK before and after the 2004 enlargement: Is there a change in immigrant self-selection?," CReAM Discussion Paper Series 1232, Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London.
  5. repec:ese:iserwp:2012-22 is not listed on IDEAS

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