Do Remittances Reduce Aid Dependency?
Aid has been for decades an important source of financing for developing countries, but more recently remittance flows have increased rapidly and are beginning to dwarf aid flows. This paper investigates how remittances affect aid flows, and how this relationship varies depending on the channel of transmission from remittances to aid. Buoyant remittances could reduce aid needs when human capital improves and private investment takes off. Absent these, aid flows could still drop as remittances may dampen donors’ incentive to scale up aid. Concurrently, remittances could be positively associated with aid if they improve a country’s absorption capacity through better human capital, or if migrants can influence aid policy in donor countries. Because it is difficult in the theory to untangle which of the channels dominates, the answer lies in the empirical analysis. Using an instrumental variable approach with panel data for a sample of developing countries from 1975–2005, the baseline results show that remittances are positively correlated with aid flows. However, this hides a complex relationship revealed by a refinement of the model, which controls for the channels of transmission from remittances to aid. Remittances appear to lead to lower aid dependency if invested rather than consumed and if human capital is developed.
References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Donald Cox & Zekeriya Eser & Emmanuel Jimenez, 1996.
"Motives for Private Transfers over the Life Cycle: An Analytical Framework and Evidence for Peru,"
Boston College Working Papers in Economics
327., Boston College Department of Economics.
- Cox, Donald & Eser, Zekeriya & Jimenez, Emmanuel, 1998. "Motives for private transfers over the life cycle: An analytical framework and evidence for Peru," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(1), pages 57-80, February.
- Adams Jr., Richard H., 2009. "The Determinants of International Remittances in Developing Countries," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 37(1), pages 93-103, January.
- Berthelemy, Jean-Claude & Tichit, Ariane, 2002.
"Bilateral Donors' Aid Allocation Decisions: A Three-dimensional Panel Analysis,"
Working Paper Series
UNU-WIDER Research Paper , World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
- Berthelemy, Jean-Claude & Tichit, Ariane, 2004. "Bilateral donors' aid allocation decisions--a three-dimensional panel analysis," International Review of Economics & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 13(3), pages 253-274.
- Dean Yang & HwaJung Choi, 2005.
"Are Remittances Insurance? Evidence from Rainfall Shocks in the Philippines,"
535, Research Seminar in International Economics, University of Michigan.
- HwaJung Choi, 2007. "Are Remittances Insurance? Evidence from Rainfall Shocks in the Philippines," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 21(2), pages 219-248, May.
- El-Sakka, M. I. T. & McNabb, Robert, 1999. "The Macroeconomic Determinants of Emigrant Remittances," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 27(8), pages 1493-1502, August.
- Cassen, Robert & ,, 1994. "Does Aid Work?: Report to an Intergovernmental Task Force," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, edition 2, number 9780198773863, December.
- Calero, C. & Bedi, A.S. & Sparrow, R.A., 2008.
"Remittances, liquidity constraints and human capital investments in Ecuador,"
ISS Working Papers - General Series
18735, International Institute of Social Studies of Erasmus University Rotterdam (ISS), The Hague.
- Calero, Carla & Bedi, Arjun S. & Sparrow, Robert, 2009. "Remittances, Liquidity Constraints and Human Capital Investments in Ecuador," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 37(6), pages 1143-1154, June.
- Calero, Carla & Bedi, Arjun S. & Sparrow, Robert, 2008. "Remittances, Liquidity Constraints and Human Capital Investments in Ecuador," IZA Discussion Papers 3358, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Samir Jahjah & Ralph Chami & Connel Fullenkamp, 2003.
"Are Immigrant Remittance Flows a Source of Capital for Development?,"
IMF Working Papers
03/189, International Monetary Fund.
- Ralph Chami & Connel Fullenkamp & Samir Jahjah, 2005. "Are Immigrant Remittance Flows a Source of Capital for Development?," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 52(1), pages 55-81, April.
- Patrick Guillaumont & Sylviane Guillaumont Jeanneney & Jacky Amprou, 2011.
"Aid Selectivity According to Augmented Criteria,"
- Patrick GUILLAUMONT & Sylviane GUILLAUMONT JEANNENEY & Jacky AMPROU, 2005. "Aid Selectivity According to Augmented Criteria," Working Papers 200526, CERDI.
- Sylviane GUILLAUMONT JEANNENEY & Patrick GUILLAUMONT & Jacky AMPROU, 2006. "Aid Selectivity According to Augmented Criteria," Working Papers 200616, CERDI.
- Giuliano, Paola & Ruiz-Arranz, Marta, 2009.
"Remittances, financial development, and growth,"
Journal of Development Economics,
Elsevier, vol. 90(1), pages 144-152, September.
- Giuliano, Paola & Ruiz-Arranz, Marta, 2006. "Remittances, Financial Development, and Growth," IZA Discussion Papers 2160, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Marta Ruiz-Arranz & Paola Giuliano, 2005. "Remittances, Financial Development, and Growth," IMF Working Papers 05/234, International Monetary Fund.
- Maëlan Le Goff & Markus Haacker & Kyung-Woo Lee & Raju Jan Singh, 2011.
"Determinants and Macroeconomic Impact of Remittances in Sub-Saharan Africa,"
- Raju Jan Singh & Markus Haacker & Kyung-woo Lee & Maëlan Le Goff, 2011. "Determinants and Macroeconomic Impact of Remittances in Sub-Saharan Africa," Journal of African Economies, Centre for the Study of African Economies (CSAE), vol. 20(2), pages 312-340, March.
- Raju J Singh & Kyung-woo Lee & Markus Haacker, 2009. "Determinants and Macroeconomic Impact of Remittances in Sub-Saharan Africa," IMF Working Papers 09/216, International Monetary Fund.
- Gang, Ira N. & Lehman, James A., 1990. "New directions or not: USAID in Latin America," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 18(5), pages 723-732, May.
- Ramón López & Maurice Schiff, 1998. "Migration and the Skill composition of the Labor Force: The Impact of Trade Liberalization in LDCs," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 31(2), pages 318-336, May.
- Guillaumont, Patrick & Laajaj, Rachid, 2006.
"When instability increases the effectiveness of aid projects,"
Policy Research Working Paper Series
4034, The World Bank.
- Rachid LAAJAJ & Patrick GUILLAUMONT, 2006. "When instability increases the effectiveness of aid projects," Working Papers 200637, CERDI.
- Patrick Guillaumont & Rachid Laajaj, 2011. "When instability increases the effectiveness of aid projects," Working Papers halshs-00557176, HAL.
- Eric Neumayer, 2003. "Do Human Rights Matter in Bilateral Aid Allocation? A Quantitative Analysis of 21 Donor Countries," Social Science Quarterly, Southwestern Social Science Association, vol. 84(3), pages 650-666.
- Funkhouser, Edward, 1995. "Remittances from International Migration: A Comparison of El Salvador and Nicaragua," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 77(1), pages 137-46, February.
- Mark McGillivray, 2003.
"Modelling Aid Allocation: Issues, Approaches And Results,"
Journal of Economic Development,
Chung-Ang Unviersity, Department of Economics, vol. 28(1), pages 171-188, June.
- McGillivray, Mark, 2003. "Modelling Aid Allocation: Issues, Approaches and Results," Working Paper Series UNU-WIDER Research Paper , World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
- Connel Fullenkamp & Thomas F. Cosimano & Michael T. Gapen & Ralph Chami & Peter J Montiel & Adolfo Barajas, 2008. "Macroeconomic Consequences of Remittances," IMF Occasional Papers 259, International Monetary Fund.
- Poirine, Bernard, 1997. "A theory of remittances as an implicit family loan arrangement," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 25(4), pages 589-611, January.
- Freund, Caroline & Spatafora, Nikola, 2005. "Remittances : transaction costs, determinants, and informal flows," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3704, The World Bank.
- Dean Yang, 2008.
"International Migration, Remittances and Household Investment: Evidence from Philippine Migrants' Exchange Rate Shocks,"
Royal Economic Society, vol. 118(528), pages 591-630, 04.
- Dean Yang, 2006. "International Migration, Remittances, and Household Investment: Evidence from Philippine Migrants' Exchange Rate Shocks," NBER Working Papers 12325, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Svensson, Jakob, 2003. "Why conditional aid does not work and what can be done about it?," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 70(2), pages 381-402, April.
- Helen V. Milner & Dustin H. Tingley, 2010. "The Political Economy Of U.S. Foreign Aid: American Legislators And The Domestic Politics Of Aid," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 22(2), pages 200-232, 07.
- Ilahi, Nadeem & Jafarey, Saqib, 1999. "Guestworker migration, remittances and the extended family: evidence from Pakistan," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 58(2), pages 485-512, April.
- Dowling, J. M. & Hiemenz, Ulrich, 1985. "Biases in the allocation of foreign aid: Some new evidence," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 13(4), pages 535-541, April.
- Agarwal, Reena & Horowitz, Andrew W., 2002. "Are International Remittances Altruism or Insurance? Evidence from Guyana Using Multiple-Migrant Households," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 30(11), pages 2033-2044, November.
- Schrooten, Mechthild, 2005. "Bringing home the money: what determines worker's remittances to transition countries?," Discussion Paper Series a466, Institute of Economic Research, Hitotsubashi University.
- Gertrud Schrieder & Beatrice Knerr, 2000. "Labour Migration as a Social Security Mechanism for Smallholder Households in Sub-Saharan Africa: The Case of Cameroon," Oxford Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 28(2), pages 223-236.
- McGillivray, Mark & Oczkowski, Edward, 1991. "Modelling the Allocation of Australian Bilateral Aid: A Two-Part Sample Selection Approach," The Economic Record, The Economic Society of Australia, vol. 67(197), pages 147-52, June.
- Gaytan-Fregoso, Helena & Lahiri, Sajal, 2000. "Foreign aid and illegal immigration," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 63(2), pages 515-527, December.
- Acosta, Pablo & Fajnzylber, Pablo & Lopez, J. Humberto, 2007. "The impact of remittances on poverty and human capital : evidence from Latin American household surveys," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4247, The World Bank.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:fdi:wpaper:590. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Vincent Mazenod)
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.