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On discrimination and the status of immigrants in the Hong Kong labour market

  • Alan T.K. Wan


    (City University of Hong Kong)

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    This paper studies the extent of discrimination against mainland Chinese immigrants in the Hong Kong labour market and provides a quantitative assessment of the source of wage differentials between local born Hong Kong residents and Chinese immigrants. Using the 2001 Hong Kong Population Census data, we find strong evidence of a wage gap between locals and post-1980 Chinese immigrants. There is also clear evidence that discrimination accounts for a substantial proportion of the wage gap between the two groups. Furthermore, our findings suggest that while the overall wage gap may shrink with the immigrants' duration of residence in Hong Kong, the percentage of the wage gap due to discrimination does not change very much after the immediate post-immigration period.

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    Article provided by AccessEcon in its journal Economics Bulletin.

    Volume (Year): 10 (2006)
    Issue (Month): 7 ()
    Pages: 1-17

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    Handle: RePEc:ebl:ecbull:eb-06j60002
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    1. Oaxaca, Ronald L. & Ransom, Michael R., 1994. "On discrimination and the decomposition of wage differentials," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 61(1), pages 5-21, March.
    2. Ronald Oaxaca, 1971. "Male-Female Wage Differentials in Urban Labor Markets," Working Papers 396, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
    3. Carneiro, Pedro & Heckman, James & Masterov, Dimitriy, 2004. "Labor market discrimination and racial differences in premarket factors," Working Paper Series 2005:3, IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy.
    4. Chiswick, Barry R, 1978. "The Effect of Americanization on the Earnings of Foreign-born Men," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 86(5), pages 897-921, October.
    5. Hoffman, Emily P, 1976. "Faculty Salaries: Is There Discrimination by Sex, Race, and Discipline? Additional Evidence," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 66(1), pages 196-98, March.
    6. G√ľnter Lang, 2005. "The difference between wages and wage potentials: Earnings disadvantages of immigrants in Germany," Journal of Economic Inequality, Springer, vol. 3(1), pages 21-42, April.
    7. Borjas, George J, 1985. "Assimilation, Changes in Cohort Quality, and the Earnings of Immigrants," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 3(4), pages 463-89, October.
    8. Kit-Chun Lam & Pak-Wai Liu, 2002. "Earnings Divergence of Immigrants," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 20(1), pages 86-104, January.
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