Theoretical and Empirical Determinants of International Labour Mobility: A Greek-German Perspective
Emigration of labour and its subsequent repatriation can best be understood as phases of an intertemporal exchange process, of a relatively abundant factor, namely unskilled labour, for a relatively scarce factor, namely capital. This capital flow initially consists of financial capital, that is of emigrant remittances, and of human capital at the time of repatriation. This analytical hypothesis is empirically tested on Greek data and seems to be validated by the empirical evidence presented. The formulation of the emigration-repatriation cycle as an intertemporal phenomenon highlights the need for forward-looking policies. The analysis suggests that planning for the period of net immigration and of reduced remittances should be an integral component of policy in the sending country.
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