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Migration, skill composition and growth


  • Kim, Young-Bae
  • Levine, Paul
  • Lotti, Emanuela


The UK, with its relatively liberal immigration policies following recent enlargements, has been one of the main recipients of migrants from new EU member states. This paper poses the questions: what is the effect of immigration on a receiving economy such as the UK? Is the effect beneficial or adverse for growth? How differently would skilled (or unskilled) migration affect both receiving and sending economies? What factors would contribute to immigration/emigration benefits/costs and economic growth driven by migration? Who are the winners and losers in both the sending and host regions? We utilize an endogenous growth two-bloc model with labour mobility of different skill compositions to address these questions. We show that migration, in general, is beneficial to the receiving country and increases the world growth rate. With remittances, the sending country in aggregate can also benefit. The only exception is in the case of unskilled migration, which can actually have a detrimental impact on the world growth rate. Winners are migrants, and the skill group in the region that sees its relative size decrease.

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  • Kim, Young-Bae & Levine, Paul & Lotti, Emanuela, 2010. "Migration, skill composition and growth," Discussion Paper Series In Economics And Econometrics 1015, Economics Division, School of Social Sciences, University of Southampton.
  • Handle: RePEc:stn:sotoec:1015

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    JEL classification:

    • F22 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - International Migration
    • F43 - International Economics - - Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance - - - Economic Growth of Open Economies
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • J61 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Geographic Labor Mobility; Immigrant Workers
    • O41 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - One, Two, and Multisector Growth Models

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