The Immigration Surplus Revisited in a General Equilibrium Model with Endogenous Growth
We revisit the work of Borjas (1995) which has provided an influential positive theory of immigration policy. An important feature of his framework is the focus on the skill-composition of immigrants and we retain this feature in our paper. Our contribution to this literature is to extend his analysis in a number of directions. First, we study the immigration surplus in the context of a general equilibrium model in which capital is endogenous and the welfare of the indigenous population is set out explicitly. Second, we introduce several sectors into the model so that changing the skill composition leads to changes in sector shares. Third, related to the second development, we introduce and R&D sector and develop a model with long-term endogenous growth. The result is that growth effects on the Immigration Surplus come to dominate the purely static effects in the original analysis of Borjas, but they are not sufficient to eliminate the emergence of losers among the section of natives competing with immigrants in the labour market.
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