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International Import Competition and the Decision to Migrate: Evidence from Mexico

Author

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  • Majlesi, Kaveh

    () (Lund University)

  • Narciso, Gaia

    () (Trinity College Dublin)

Abstract

We analyze the effects of the increase in China's import competition on Mexican domestic and international migration. We exploit the variation in exposure to competition from China, following its accession to the WTO in 2001, across Mexican municipalities and estimate the effect of international competition on the individual decision to migrate. Controlling for individual and municipality features, we find that individuals living in municipalities more exposed to Chinese import competition are more likely to migrate to other municipalities within Mexico, while a negative effect is found on the decision to migrate to the US. In particular, we find that Chinese import competition reduces migrants' negative self- selection: the rising international competition lowers the likelihood of low-educated, low-income people to migrate to the US, by making them more financially constrained. We do not find any evidence that changes in demand for Mexican workers in the US drive our results.

Suggested Citation

  • Majlesi, Kaveh & Narciso, Gaia, 2018. "International Import Competition and the Decision to Migrate: Evidence from Mexico," IZA Discussion Papers 11346, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp11346
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Gaia Narciso, 2018. "Crop prices and migration in Vietnam," WIDER Working Paper Series 142, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    2. Sónia Cabral & Pedro S. Martins & João Pereira dos Santos & Mariana Tavares, 2018. "Collateral Damage? Labour Market Effects of Competing with China - at Home and Abroad," Working Papers w201812, Banco de Portugal, Economics and Research Department.
    3. Narciso, Gaia, 2020. "Crop prices and the individual decision to migrate," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 91(C).
    4. Melissa Dell & Benjamin Feigenberg & Kensuke Teshima, 2019. "The Violent Consequences of Trade-Induced Worker Displacement in Mexico," American Economic Review: Insights, American Economic Association, vol. 1(1), pages 43-58, June.
    5. Gray, Rowena & Narciso, Gaia & Tortorici, Gaspare, 2019. "Globalization, agricultural markets and mass migration: Italy, 1881–1912," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 74(C).
    6. Gaia Narciso, 2018. "Crop prices and migration in Vietnam," WIDER Working Paper Series wp-2018-142, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    7. Rowena Gray & Gaia Narciso & Gaspare Tortorici, 2017. "Globalization, Agricultural Markets and Mass Migration," CReAM Discussion Paper Series 1713, Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    import competition; domestic migration; international migration; negative self-selection;

    JEL classification:

    • F14 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Empirical Studies of Trade
    • F16 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Trade and Labor Market Interactions
    • F22 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - International Migration
    • O15 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration
    • R23 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Household Analysis - - - Regional Migration; Regional Labor Markets; Population

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