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The Regulation of Professional Migration in ASEAN - Insights from the Health and IT Sectors


  • Chris Manning


  • Alexandra Sidorenko



This study assesses the extent of regulation of in-migration of professionals into ASEAN countries. The focus is on two selected sectors, health care and information technology (IT). Both sectors have been given special attention in regional trade negotiations which seek to increase the mobility of professionals in ASEAN. The study is set in the framework of rising demand for more skilled manpower, associated with rapid economic growth and a high income elasticity of demand for services. We develop measures to assess the extent of regulation of in-migration in recipient countries, as well as the depth of commitments to the mobility of professionals under Mode 4. The study links several indices of regulation to stages of economic development. It finds that the more advanced countries in ASEAN tend to have made more liberal commitments under Mode 4. They also had more liberal regimes for international movements of skilled manpower in both health and IT. However there was less difference between more and less developed countries regarding general visa and work permit arrangements. Finally, because of their greater social significance, regulations related to the migration of health professionals tended to be more restrictive than for IT professionals.

Suggested Citation

  • Chris Manning & Alexandra Sidorenko, 2006. "The Regulation of Professional Migration in ASEAN - Insights from the Health and IT Sectors," Departmental Working Papers 2006-08, The Australian National University, Arndt-Corden Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:pas:papers:2006-08

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Bhatnagar, Pradip & Manning, Chris, 2005. "Regional arrangements for mode 4 in the services trade: lessons from the ASEAN experience," World Trade Review, Cambridge University Press, vol. 4(02), pages 171-199, July.
    2. Irene Hardill & Sandra Macdonald, 2000. "Skilled International Migration: The Experience of Nurses in the UK," Regional Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 34(7), pages 681-692, October.
    3. Aaditya Mattoo & Antonia Carzaniga, 2003. "Moving People to Deliver Services," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 15088, January.
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    More about this item


    International Migration; Trade and Labour Markets; Professional Labour; Health Care Professionals;

    JEL classification:

    • F16 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Trade and Labor Market Interactions
    • F22 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - International Migration
    • I18 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Government Policy; Regulation; Public Health
    • J44 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Particular Labor Markets - - - Professional Labor Markets and Occupations

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