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Human trafficking and the effectiveness of asylum policies

We investigate the effects of restrictive asylum policies on the number and group composition of asylum seekers. We model the choices of refugees and traffickers about whether to migrate and to apply for asylum. Counter-intuitively, restrictive asylum policies do not lead to a reduction in the inflow of refugees or to a better selection of asylum seekers. Instead, we show that under conditions outside the control of policy makers these policies can increase the number of asylum claims and the number of refugees working in slave-like conditions and prevent some of those most in need of protection from accessing it.

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Paper provided by Saarland University, CSLE - Center for the Study of Law and Economics in its series CSLE Discussion Paper Series with number 2008-01.

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Date of creation: 2008
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Handle: RePEc:zbw:csledp:200801
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  1. Harris, John R & Todaro, Michael P, 1970. "Migration, Unemployment & Development: A Two-Sector Analysis," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 60(1), pages 126-42, March.
  2. W. Kip Viscusi, 2004. "The Value of Life: Estimates with Risks by Occupation and Industry," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 42(1), pages 29-48, January.
  3. Friebel, Guido & Guriev, Sergei, 2004. "Smuggling Humans: A Theory of Debt-Financed Migration," IZA Discussion Papers 1025, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  4. George J. Borjas, 1994. "The Economics of Immigration," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 32(4), pages 1667-1717, December.
  5. Timothy J. Hatton, 2004. "Seeking asylum in Europe," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 19(38), pages 5-62, 04.
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