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Status and Progress in Cross-Border Portability of Social Security Benefits

Author

Listed:
  • Holzmann, Robert

    () (University of New South Wales)

  • Wels, Jacques

    () (University of Cambridge)

Abstract

The importance of cross-border portability of social benefits is increasing in parallel with the rise in the absolute number of international migrants and their share of the world population, and perhaps more importantly, with the rising share of world population that for some part of their life is working and/or retiring abroad. This paper estimates how the rising stock of migrants is distributed over four key portability regimes: those with portability through bilateral social security arrangements (regime I); those with potential exportability of eligible benefits from abroad (regime II); documented workers with no access to national schemes but no contribution payment either (regime III); and undocumented workers with no access to any scheme (regime IV). Estimates for 2000 and 2013 are compared. The results indicate a modest but noticeable increase in the share of migrants under regime I, from 21.9 percent in 2000 to 23.3 percent in 2013. The biggest change occurred under regime III, which almost doubled to 9.4 percent. Regime II reduced by 3.0 percentage points but remains the dominant scheme (at 53.2 percent). The estimates suggest that the scope of regime IV (informality) reduced by 2.9 percentage points, accounting for 14.0 of all migrants in 2013. This trend is positive, but more will need to be done to progress on benefit portability.

Suggested Citation

  • Holzmann, Robert & Wels, Jacques, 2018. "Status and Progress in Cross-Border Portability of Social Security Benefits," IZA Discussion Papers 11481, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp11481
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Robert Holzmann, 2016. "Do bilateral social security agreements deliver on the portability of pensions and health care benefits? A summary policy paper on four migration corridors between EU and non-EU member states," IZA Journal of European Labor Studies, Springer;Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit GmbH (IZA), vol. 5(1), pages 1-35, December.
    2. Bernd Genser & Robert Holzmann, 2016. "The Taxation of Internationally Portable Pensions: Fiscal Issues and Policy Options," CESifo Working Paper Series 5702, CESifo Group Munich.
    3. Avato, Johanna & Koettl, Johannes & Sabates-Wheeler, Rachel, 2010. "Social Security Regimes, Global Estimates, and Good Practices: The Status of Social Protection for International Migrants," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 38(4), pages 455-466, April.
    4. Holzmann,Robert, 2016. "Do bilateral social security agreements deliver on the portability of pensions and health care benefits? A summary policy paper on four migration corridors between EU and non-EU member states," Policy Research Working Paper Series 106186, The World Bank.
    5. John Bryant, 2005. "Children of International Migrants in Indonesia, Thailand, and the Philippines: A review of evidence and policies," Papers inwopa05/32, Innocenti Working Papers.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    labor mobility; retirement mobility; portability regimes; bilateral social security agreements; social benefits;

    JEL classification:

    • D69 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Other
    • H55 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Social Security and Public Pensions
    • I19 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Other
    • J62 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Job, Occupational and Intergenerational Mobility; Promotion

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