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The Vanishing Farms? The Impact of International Migration on Albanian Family Farming

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  • Miluka, Juna
  • Carletto, Calogero
  • Davis, Benjamin
  • Zezza, Alberto

Abstract

Taking advantage of new data on a high migration country, the main goal of this paper is to investigate the impact of migration on resource allocation to, and income from, agricultural production of farm households. The main channels through which these impacts can be expected to materialize are via the allocation of labor and capital resources of the households, as modified by the loss of "resident" family workforce to migration and the gain in access to working capital or credit made possible by the inflow of remittances or simply by an improved economic and financial status of the household associated with migration. Our results suggest that migration of one or more household members is being used by rural households in Albania as part of a strategy to move out of agriculture. The impact of family labor is unequivocal: members of households with migrants abroad work significantly fewer hours in agricultural production, both in total and on a per capita basis. Also, women in migrant households work proportionately more than men, when compared with their counterparts in non-migrant households. Contrary to expectation, and despite sizable remittances, migrant households do not appear to invest more in productivity-enhancing and time-saving farm technologies in crop production such as chemical fertilizers and farm equipment. Despite the reduced labor effort, however, agriculture income does not seem to decline as a result of migration, and total income (as expected) increases significantly. Although a relative decline of agriculture is an inevitable part of the development process, a stagnating agriculture ought to be a matter of concern to policy makers, given the number of Albanian households still relying on farming as main source of income, and the pervasive lack of non-farm income opportunities for rural households. Also, the lack of productivity growth and investment in agriculture that the evidence presented in this paper seems to be hinting to, can be interpreted as signals of a foregone opportunity particularly in areas of the country with higher farming potential.

Suggested Citation

  • Miluka, Juna & Carletto, Calogero & Davis, Benjamin & Zezza, Alberto, 2007. "The Vanishing Farms? The Impact of International Migration on Albanian Family Farming," 103rd Seminar, April 23-25, 2007, Barcelona, Spain 9406, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:eaa103:9406
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Cornelia Serena, PASCA, 2016. "Monetary Remittance - Romania Case Study," Contemporary Economy Journal, Constantin Brancoveanu University, vol. 1(3), pages 50-59.
    2. Deininger, Klaus & Savastano, Sara & Carletto, Calogero, 2012. "Land Fragmentation, Cropland Abandonment, and Land Market Operation in Albania," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 40(10), pages 2108-2122.
    3. Calogero Carletto & Jennica Larrison & Çaglar Özden, 2014. "Informing migration policies: a data primer," Chapters,in: International Handbook on Migration and Economic Development, chapter 2, pages 9-41 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    4. repec:spr:qualqt:v:52:y:2018:i:1:d:10.1007_s11135-017-0476-9 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. repec:gam:jsusta:v:10:y:2018:i:3:p:894-:d:137219 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Filiz Garip, 2014. "The Impact of Migration and Remittances on Wealth Accumulation and Distribution in Rural Thailand," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 51(2), pages 673-698, April.
    7. Amy Lynne Damon, 2010. "Agricultural Land Use and Asset Accumulation in Migrant Households: the Case of El Salvador," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 46(1), pages 162-189.
    8. Möllers, Judith & Traikova, Diana & Herzfeld, Thomas & Bajrami, Egzon, 2017. "Study on rural migration and return migration in Kosovo," IAMO Discussion Papers 166, Leibniz Institute of Agricultural Development in Transition Economies (IAMO).
    9. Mendola, Mariapia & Carletto, Calogero, 2012. "Migration and gender differences in the home labour market: Evidence from Albania," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 19(6), pages 870-880.
    10. Talip Kilic & Calogero Carletto & Juna Miluka & Sara Savastano, 2009. "Rural nonfarm income and its impact on agriculture: evidence from Albania," Agricultural Economics, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 40(2), pages 139-160, March.
    11. Hagen-Zanker, Jessica, 2010. "Modest expectations: Causes and effects of migration on migrant households in source countries," MPRA Paper 29507, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    12. Karamba, Wendy R. & Quiñones, Esteban J. & Winters, Paul, 2011. "Migration and food consumption patterns in Ghana," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 36(1), pages 41-53, February.
    13. Göbel, Kristin, 2012. "Remittances and Gender-Speci fic Employment Patterns in Peru - a longitudinal Analysis," Annual Conference 2012 (Goettingen): New Approaches and Challenges for the Labor Market of the 21st Century 65409, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    14. Brauw, Alan de, 2015. "Migration, Youth, and Agricultural Productivity in Ethiopia," 2015 Allied Social Science Association (ASSA) Annual Meeting, January 3-5, 2015, Boston, Massachusetts 189684, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.

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    Keywords

    Farm Management;

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