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The Role of Immigration in Sustaining the Social Security System: A Political Economy Approach

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  • Razin, Assaf
  • Sand, Edith

Abstract

In the political debate people express the idea that immigrants are good because they can help pay for the old. The paper explores this idea in a dynamic political-economy setup. We characterize sub-game perfect Markov equilibria where immigration policy and pay-as-you-go (PAYG) social security system are jointly determined through a majority voting process. The main feature of the model is that immigrants are desirable for the sustainability of the social security system, because the political system is able to manipulate the ratio of old to young and thereby the coalition which supports future high social security benefits. We demonstrate that the older is the native born population the more likely is that the immigration policy is liberalized; which in turn has a positive effect on the sustainability of the social security system.

Suggested Citation

  • Razin, Assaf & Sand, Edith, 2007. "The Role of Immigration in Sustaining the Social Security System: A Political Economy Approach," CEPR Discussion Papers 6302, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  • Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:6302
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Blog mentions

    As found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
    1. Social security and immigration policy cycles
      by Economic Logician in Economic Logic on 2008-10-23 17:32:00

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    Cited by:

    1. Hugo Benítez-Silva & Eva Cárceles-Poveda & Selçuk Eren, 2011. "Effects of Legal and Unauthorized Immigration on the U.S. Social Security System," Working Papers wp250, University of Michigan, Michigan Retirement Research Center.
    2. Zaiceva, A. & Zimmermann, K.F., 2016. "Migration and the Demographic Shift," Handbook of the Economics of Population Aging, in: Piggott, John & Woodland, Alan (ed.), Handbook of the Economics of Population Aging, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 0, pages 119-177, Elsevier.
    3. Jakubiak Igor, 2017. "Migration and Welfare Systems – State of the Art and Research Challenges," Central European Economic Journal, Sciendo, vol. 1(48), pages 51-70, November.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    demographic stretegic voting; overlapping generations; social security sustainability;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • E1 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - General Aggregative Models
    • H3 - Public Economics - - Fiscal Policies and Behavior of Economic Agents
    • P1 - Economic Systems - - Capitalist Systems

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