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Ready to Go? EU Enlargement and Migration Potential: Lessons for the Czech Republic in the Context of Irish Migration Experience

  • Wadim Strielkowski
  • Cathal O'Donoghue

EU enlargement is hardly to be seen as the major push factor for migration. There are mainly economic factors that influence the migration decisions. Besides it seems that there is a migration potential, unique for every country, that pre-determines the migration or labour mobility. In our paper we (i) analyze the impact of internal economic factors, such as GDP growth, unemployment and wages on the emigration rate and (ii) compare the migration potential for the country distinguished by the high ratio of outward migrations (represented by Ireland) with those of the post-communist economy as well as the "new" EU member (represented by the Czech Republic). We come to conclusions that economic factors have the decisive role on pre-determining the migrations and that migration potential and the propensity to migrate as a reaction to worsening of the economic conditions at home are highly correlated. These can explain why there was no mass emigration from the EU "new" Member States to the "old" Member States after the recent enlargement, as far as it comes to migration potential needed for inducing such labour moves. The potential emigrants from new EU Member States are simply not ready to go to wealthier Member States in search of better wage and employment opportunities.

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Article provided by University of Economics, Prague in its journal Prague Economic Papers.

Volume (Year): 2006 (2006)
Issue (Month): 1 ()
Pages: 14-28

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Handle: RePEc:prg:jnlpep:v:2006:y:2006:i:1:id:273:p:14-28
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  1. Jan Fidrmuc, 2002. "Migration and regional adjustment to asymmetric shocks in transition economies," CPB Discussion Paper 7, CPB Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis.
  2. Kahanec, Martin & Zimmermann, Klaus F., 2008. "International Migration, Ethnicity and Economic Inequality," IZA Discussion Papers 3450, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  3. 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).
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