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Unilateral Facilitation Does Not Raise International Labor Migration from the Philippines

  • David McKenzie

    ()

    (Development Research Group, The World Bank)

  • Emily Beam

    ()

    (Department of Economics, National University of Singapore)

  • Dean Yang

    ()

    (Economics Department, University of Michigan)

Significant income gains from migrating from poorer to richer countries have motivated unilateral (source-country) policies facilitating labor emigration. However, their effectiveness is unknown. We conducted a large-scale randomized experiment in the Philippines testing the impact of unilaterally facilitating international labor migration. Our most intensive treatment doubled the rate of job offers but had no identifiable effect on international labor migration. Even the highest overseas job-search rate we induced (22%) falls far short of the share initially expressing interest in migrating (34%). We conclude that unilateral migration facilitation will at most induce a trickle, not a flood, of additional emigration.

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Paper provided by Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London in its series CReAM Discussion Paper Series with number 1319.

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Date of creation: Sep 2013
Handle: RePEc:crm:wpaper:1319
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