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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.

Suggested Citation

  • Wadim Strielkowski & Cathal O’Donoghue, 2006. "Ready to Go? EU Enlargement and Migration Potential: Lessons for the Czech Republic in the Context of Irish Migration Experience," Prague Economic Papers, University of Economics, Prague, vol. 2006(1), pages 14-28.
  • Handle: RePEc:prg:jnlpep:v:2006:y:2006:i:1:id:273:p:14-28

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Fidrmuc, Jan, 2004. "Migration and regional adjustment to asymmetric shocks in transition economies," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(2), pages 230-247, June.
    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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    Cited by:

    1. Wadim Strielkowski & Petr Filipec & Miroslav Štefánik & Karolina Kowalska, 2013. "Outward Labour Migration in the Czech Republic, Poland and Slovakia after the EU Enlargement in 2004," Czech Economic Review, Charles University Prague, Faculty of Social Sciences, Institute of Economic Studies, vol. 7(1), pages 042-054, March.
    2. Karolina Kowalska & Wadim Strielkowski, 2013. "Propensity to Migration in the CEECs: Comparison of Migration Potential in the Czech Republic and Poland," Prague Economic Papers, University of Economics, Prague, vol. 2013(3), pages 343-357.
    3. Wadim Strielkowski & Jan Hněvkovský, 2013. "The Performance Of The Czech Labour Market After The 2004 Eu Enlargement," Economic Annals, Faculty of Economics, University of Belgrade, vol. 58(197), pages 79-94, April – J.

    More about this item


    migration; labour mobility; Ireland; EU enlargement; Czech Republic;

    JEL classification:

    • F02 - International Economics - - General - - - International Economic Order and Integration
    • F22 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - International Migration
    • J61 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Geographic Labor Mobility; Immigrant Workers


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