Temporary Migration and Economic Development: the Triple-Win Policy Vision applied to North Africa

Lead Research Organisation: University of Southampton
Department Name: School of Social Sciences

Abstract

Abstracts are not currently available in GtR for all funded research. This is normally because the abstract was not required at the time of proposal submission, but may be because it included sensitive information such as personal details.

Publications

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Bijwaard G (2019) Immigrants' Wage Growth and Selective Out-Migration in Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics

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Bijwaard G (2014) Do high-income or low-income immigrants leave faster? in Journal of Development Economics

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Hamdouch B (2015) Return migration and entrepreneurship in Morocco in Middle East Development Journal

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Wahba J (2015) Selection, selection, selection: the impact of return migration in Journal of Population Economics

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Wahba J (2012) Out of sight, out of mind: Migration, entrepreneurship and social capital in Regional Science and Urban Economics

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Wahba J. (2012) Perspectives on Migration in Economic Review

 
Description The overarching objective of this project is to enlarge the evidence base of the triple-win policy vision of temporary migration, by focusing on the return migrants. This project considers the extent to which, and the leading dimensions along which, the returnee can impact positively on the source country, and in turn how the sending country can maximise its benefits from temporary migration by supporting the returnee. This dynamic relationship in turn informs the incentives of migrants to stay temporarily rather than permanently in the host country, and to become directly a driver or contributor to economic development in the source country. Hence, resulting in a win-win-win situation for migrants, sending countries and receiving countries. Our main findings are:
-There is a positive role of temporary migration on migrants: they accumulate savings which increase their probability of becoming entrepreneurs and setting up businesses. They acquire skills overseas which allow them to gain wage premiums, relative to non-migrants upon return. They also transfer ideas and norms that impact on the economic and political outcomes observed in the home country. Hence, this suggests that return migration reduces credit constraints faced in developing countries and allows for brain circulation and gains for sending economies.
- There are several challenges that are limiting our understanding of the actual impact of return migration. The biggest obstacle is the lack of data on return migration. Given the non-random nature of emigration and return, reliance on non-representative sample of returnees is problematic. Thus, there is a need to ensure that census data and representative surveys such as LSMS and LFS collect systematically information on previous location 5 years ago to capture returnees and also data on members of the household who are overseas at the time.
-The second challenge is for policymakers. The right mix of policies is required to maximise the benefits of return migration. Facilitating investment by reducing the red tape and providing information on investment possibilities to migrants and returnees should be promoted. Given that return migrants tend to be willing and more likely to embark on setting up projects/businesses, there is a room for encouraging and directing their investment. Also, investors need reassurances about their rights and the enforcement of contracts. Moreover, there is a need to provide information on areas of investment to encourage migrants' investment. Finally, migrants can play an important role in job creation in their home countries through their investment if they are enticed using the right financial incentives such as tax holidays to set up business and create jobs.
-Overall, our project highlights that return migrants are an important potential resource for developing sending countries, such as Egypt and Morocco, that so far has not been fully utilised.
Exploitation Route -The biggest obstacle is the lack of data on return migration. Thus, there is a need to ensure that census data and representative surveys such as LSMS and LFS collect systematically information on previous location 5 years ago to capture returnees and also data on members of the household who are overseas at the time.
-The second challenge is for policymakers to adopt the right mix of policies to maximise the benefits of return migration. Facilitating investment by reducing the red tape and providing information on investment possibilities to migrants and returnees should be promoted. Also, providing the right environment for investment that provide reassurances to investors about their rights and the enforcement of contracts.
Sectors Other

 
Description Our findings on the determinants and impact of temporary and return migration have been used to provide evidence for policy debates. Our findings were discussed at the OECD and UNFPA conference on 'Mobilising migrants' skills for development in the MENA region: Making the Most of Young Migrants Skills' in Tunis, in 2013. Also, our results have been used to inform policy makers and have appeared in the IZA World of Labor which provides decision-makers with relevant and succinct information based on sound empirical evidence to help in formulating good policies and best practices.
Sector Other
Impact Types Economic,Policy & public services

 
Title Egypt Labor Market Panel Survey 2012 
Description The Egypt Labor Market Panel Survey (ELMPS), carried out by the Economic Research Forum (ERF) in cooperation with Egypt's Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics (CAPMAS) since 1998. A refresher sample (financed by our ESRC/DFID research project) was added to the 2012 wave to allow a more detailed measure of migration trends, determinants, consequences and return migration in Egypt. A new refresher sample of 2,000 households over-sampling areas with a high density of migrants was added. In addition, two new modules (one on return migration and the other on current migration) were designed by J. Wahba and added to the ELMPS2012. The 2012 round of the survey provides a unique opportunity to ascertain the impact of the momentous events accompanying the January 25th revolution on the Egyptian economy and labor market and on the lives of Egyptian workers and their families. The Egypt Labor Market Panel Survey of 2012 (ELMPS 2012) is the third round of this longitudinal survey, which was also carried out in 2006. The ELMPS is a wide-ranging, nationally representative panel survey that covers topics such as parental background, education, housing, access to services, residential mobility, migration and remittances, time use, marriage patterns and costs, fertility, women's decision making and empowerment, job dynamics, savings and borrowing behavior, the operation of household enterprises and farms, besides the usual focus on employment, unemployment and earnings in typical labor force surveys. In addition to the survey's panel design, which permits the study of various phenomena over time, the survey also contains a large number of retrospective questions about the timing of major life events such as education, residential mobility, jobs, marriage and fertility. The survey provides detailed information about place of birth and subsequent residence, as well information about schools and colleges attended at various stages of an individual's trajectory, which permit the individual records to be linked to information from other data sources about the geographic context in which the individual lived and the educational institutions s/he attended. 
Type Of Material Database/Collection of data 
Year Produced 2014 
Provided To Others? Yes  
Impact Citations of Publications that used the study: Assaad, Ragui, and Caroline Krafft. "The Egypt Labor Market Panel Survey: Introducing the 2012 Round." (2013). Assaad, Ragui, and Caroline Krafft. "The Egypt labor market panel survey: introducing the 2012 round." IZA Journal of Labor & Development 2, no. 8 (2013). 
URL http://www.erfdataportal.com/index.php/catalog/45
 
Description Closed Round Table Discussion on Arab Gulf Labour Markets and Migration, Doha 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Other academic audiences (collaborators, peers etc.)
Results and Impact Participants engaged in discussion on the existing knowledge and gaps on the Arab Gulf States labour markets and migration; the state of research in terms of topics, quality and usefulness for policy reform and suggesting an agenda for the upcoming 2-5 years; evaluate the availability, reliability, validity, comparability and accessibility of demographic, economic, legal, social, and administrative data (statistical and survey), documents and records and evaluate them for the upcoming 2-5 years.

Not known
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
URL http://www.grc.net/index.php?Search=&frm_title=+%3E+GRC+Event+Summary&frm_action=detail_book&frm_mod...
 
Description IZA Workshop on Labor Markets and Labor Policy in MENA Countries 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Other academic audiences (collaborators, peers etc.)
Results and Impact A discussion on MENA labor markets and policy implications.

A collection of papers on MENA labour markets were published in the IZA Journal of Labor & Development.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013
 
Description London Student Conference on "The Economics of Migration" 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? Yes
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact Jackie Wahba gave a keynote presentation to A- level students at London Student Conference on "The Economics of Migration" in London.

It has raised awareness among A-level Economics students of the relevance of the subject matter.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013
URL http://www.londonstudentconferences.co.uk/
 
Description OECD/UNFPA conference on Mobilising migrants' skills for development in the MENA region 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? Yes
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Other academic audiences (collaborators, peers etc.)
Results and Impact The conference was attended by policymakers, academics and migrant associations. The presentation raised interesting issues regarding the benefits of return migration to the home country.

Not known.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013
URL http://www.oecd.org/migration/mobilisingmigrantsskillsfordevelopmentinthemenaregiontunis13-14may2013...
 
Description Public Policy Day, organised by the World Bank, Ministry of Moroccans Residing Abroad, and Marseille Center for Mediterranean Integration 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Other academic audiences (collaborators, peers etc.)
Results and Impact Jackie Wahba was invited to a Public Policy Day, organised by the World Bank, Ministry of Moroccans Residing Abroad, and Marseille Center for Mediterranean Integration, in Rabat in May 2013 and talked about Return Migration in MENA to policymakers.

Not known
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013
 
Description Talk at King Edwards School Southampton to the economics society 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact Students from the economic society of the King Edwards School (Sixth Form College) at Southampton attended the talk "An Economic Perspective of Immigration" which was followed by questions made by the students and discussion on the topic.

Interest in Economics was apparent from the students after the talk.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013
 
Description Two day multidisciplinary workshop on "International Migration in the Middle East and North Africa after the Arab Uprising: A Long Term Perspective". 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Other academic audiences (collaborators, peers etc.)
Results and Impact We presented our preliminary findings to academics, and policymakers.

Not Known.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013
URL http://iussp.org/sites/default/files/Seminar_Report_International_Migration_Cairo_2013_0.pdf