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A Spatial Perspective on European Integration: Heterogeneous Welfare and Migration Effects from the Single Market and the Brexit

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  • Marcel Henkel
  • Tobias Seidel

Abstract

We use a quantitative model to study the implications of European integration for welfare and migration flows across 1,318 regions. The model suggests that an increase of trade barriers to the level of 1957 reduces welfare by about 1-2 percent on average, depending on the presumed trade elasticity. However, remote regions may face initial welfare losses of up to 4 percent causing an estimated migration of about 8 million individuals to the European core. This implies that the dismantling of trade barriers in Europe has led to a more homogeneous spatial distribution of economic activity. With regard to the Brexit, we find moderate welfare losses for the UK of -0.44 percent in the most pessimistic scenario while continental Europe’s welfare declines by 0.18 percent. In the most unfavorable scenario, about 500,000 people would leave the UK in the long run.

Suggested Citation

  • Marcel Henkel & Tobias Seidel, 2016. "A Spatial Perspective on European Integration: Heterogeneous Welfare and Migration Effects from the Single Market and the Brexit," CESifo Working Paper Series 6289, CESifo Group Munich.
  • Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_6289
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    File URL: http://www.cesifo-group.de/DocDL/cesifo1_wp6289.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Volker Nitsch & Nikolaus Wolf, 2013. "Tear down this wall: on the persistence of borders in trade," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 46(1), pages 154-179, February.
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    6. Behrens, Kristian & Mion, Giordano & Murata, Yasusada & Suedekum, Jens, 2017. "Spatial frictions," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 97(C), pages 40-70.
    7. Monte, Ferdinando & Redding, Stephen J. & Rossi-Hansberg, Esteban, 2015. "Commuting, Migration and Local Employment Elasticities," CEPR Discussion Papers 10933, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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    9. Andrei A. Levchenko & Jing Zhang, 2012. "Comparative advantage and the welfare impact of European integration," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 27(72), pages 567-602, October.
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    Cited by:

    1. Marcel Henkel & Tobias Seidel & Jens Suedekum, 2018. "Fiscal Transfers in the Spatial Economy," CESifo Working Paper Series 7012, CESifo Group Munich.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    regional integration; labor mobility; spatial inequality;

    JEL classification:

    • F10 - International Economics - - Trade - - - General
    • F12 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Models of Trade with Imperfect Competition and Scale Economies; Fragmentation
    • F15 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Economic Integration
    • R11 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics - - - Regional Economic Activity: Growth, Development, Environmental Issues, and Changes
    • R12 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics - - - Size and Spatial Distributions of Regional Economic Activity; Interregional Trade (economic geography)
    • R13 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics - - - General Equilibrium and Welfare Economic Analysis of Regional Economies
    • R23 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Household Analysis - - - Regional Migration; Regional Labor Markets; Population

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