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Occupation-specific immigration quotas in political equilibrium

Immigration policies are generally protectionist, yet positive immigration quotas often exist for workers in speci c occupations where the native labor supply is scarce. This paper determines occupation-speci c immigration quotas in a political economy framework with endogenous prices and compares them to the social optimum. It shows that positive quotas for speci c occupations can be the political outcome, even when total welfare e ects of immigration are negative. Two of the main ndings are that the (unique) voting outcome on immigration quotas is i) positive, if workers are immobile across occupations, and ii) negative (positive) for occupations where the native labor supply is suciently large (small), if workers are mobile across occupations.

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Paper provided by University of Vienna, Department of Economics in its series Vienna Economics Papers with number 1207.

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Date of creation: Oct 2012
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Handle: RePEc:vie:viennp:1207
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  1. Mayda, Anna Maria, 2004. "Who Is Against Immigration? A Cross-Country Investigation of Individual Attitudes toward Immigrants," IZA Discussion Papers 1115, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  2. Facchini, Giovanni & Mayda, Anna Maria, 2008. "From individual attitudes towards migrants to migration policy outcomes: Theory and evidence," CEPR Discussion Papers 6835, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  3. Dixit Avinash & Rob Rafael, 1994. "Switching Costs and Sectoral Adjustments in General Equilibrium with Uninsured Risk," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 62(1), pages 48-69, February.
  4. Donald R. Davis & David E. Weinstein, 2002. "Technological Superiority and the Losses from Migration," NBER Working Papers 8971, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. James Dolmas & Gregory W. Huffman, 1998. "On the political economy of immigration and income redistribution," Working Papers 9804, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas.
  6. George J. Borjas & Jeffrey Grogger & Gordon H. Hanson, 2012. "Comment: On Estimating Elasticities Of Substition," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 10(1), pages 198-210, 02.
  7. Facchini, Giovanni & Willmann, Gerald, 2005. "The political economy of international factor mobility," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 67(1), pages 201-219, September.
  8. Zachariadis, Marios, 2012. "Immigration and international prices," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 87(2), pages 298-311.
  9. Tommaso Frattini, 2012. "Immigrazione," Rivista di Politica Economica, SIPI Spa, issue 3, pages 363-407, July-Sept.
  10. Paul W. Miller, 1999. "Immigration Policy and Immigrant Quality: The Australian Points System," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(2), pages 192-197, May.
  11. Hillman, Arye L. & Weiss, Avi, 1999. "A theory of permissible illegal immigration," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 15(4), pages 585-604, November.
  12. Ortega, Francesc, 2005. "Immigration quotas and skill upgrading," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(9-10), pages 1841-1863, September.
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