Prospects Migrations Offers Development In The Global South Economics Essay

Migration is every bit old as world in the sense that all human societies are merchandises of migration. It is one of the great invariables and permeant phenomenon of human history since the beginnings of adult male. Its importance therefore can non be over emphatic. Harmonizing to Koser ( 2007:10 ) , migration has ‘supported the growing of the universe economic system, contributed to the development of provinces and societies and enriched many civilizations and civilizations ‘ .

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The construct of human migration as the motion of people from one location to another, sometimes over long distances or in big groups and the freedoms of people to populate their lives as they choose, is cardinal to the capablenesss attack of ‘Development as Freedom ‘ as espoused by Amartya Sen ( 1999 ) .

Historically, migration takes many forms and signifiers and several stages of it have been noted ( Koser, 2007 ; Bush, 2007 ) such as the slave trade epoch during the 16th – nineteenth century, the motions of Europeans to the Australasia between 19th and twentieth century etc. Migration could be voluntary and nonvoluntary, internal or international, rural to urban, urban to rural or inter urban, South to South, South to North, skilled and unskilled, irregular and round etc.

These assorted signifiers have their distinguishable characteristics in its development. The chief concern of the essay will be the international signifier of migration of skilled labor from the Global South to the North with a position to unknoting the chances that migration could offer for development in the Global South.

International migration is frequently referred to as the human face of globalization ( Keeley, 2009 ) , though it is non an innovation of the late 20th century, nor even of modernness in its twin pretenses of capitalist economy and colonization ( Castles and Miller, 2003 ) . International migration has become one of the cardinal features of the progressively interrelated universe of the 21st century.

Harmonizing to Massey and Taylor ( 2004 ) , it is merely the labour constituent of a planetary market economic system. International migration is a complex issue that touches every state in the universe and it is inextricably linked with other planetary issues including, human security, human rights, poorness, development etc. The outgrowth of international migration is frequently considered as a force for societal transmutation ( Castles and Miller 2003 ) .

But, the inquiries that frequently arise are ; Whose transmutation? Who benefits? Etc. Answers to these conceptual mystifiers will be the major focal point of the essay.

The current planetary migration is distinguishable from the earlier 1s due to several factors ; the planetary economic integrating, the worsening existent costs of communicating and transit, prevailing spreads in the criterion of life between rich and hapless states and the continued exposure of the latter to man-made and natural catastrophes ( Longhi et al, 2008 ; Willis, 2008 ; Massey and Taylor, 2004 ) .

It is apparent ( Castles and Miller, 2003:2 ) that “ while motions of people across boundary lines have shaped provinces and societies since clip immemorial, what is typical in recent old ages is the planetary range, their centrality to domestic and international political relations and the tremendous economic and societal effects ” .

Harmonizing to the United Nations estimations ( 2009 ) , the figure of International migrators is 214 million or 3.1 per centum of the universe ‘s population. About 37 per centum of migration in the universe is from developing states to the developed states. Most migration occurs within states in the same class of development ; about 60 per centum of migrators move either between developing or between developed states ( HDR, 2009 ) .

There are 14 million refugees populating outside their state of citizenship stand foring 7 per centum of the universe ‘s migrators. An estimated 50 million people out of the 200 million international migrators that move from developing states to developed states are populating and working abroad with irregular position. Merely a 3rd of the universe ‘s migrators are in less developed states, with 60 % in more developed states ( OECD, 2009 ) .

Having highlighted a few inside informations about the features and composing of international migration, it will be interesting to observe that contemporary migration peculiarly from developing states to developed states is frequently a response to development failures in the beginning states ‘as persons seek to happen a better life for themselves and their households elsewhere ‘ ( Willis, 2008 ) .

No uncertainty, international migration has become an indispensable and inevitable constituent of the economic and societal life of every state but the benefits to both directing and having states are unequal and unevenly spread. The underdeveloped states are normally at a disadvantage.

There is a demand to “ understand the international context of migration as a moral force of planetary poorness and the planetary power of major capitalist provinces and capitalist employers of labor ” ( Bush, 2007:50 ) .

The essay will reason this fact and substantiate with relevant illustrations that migration as it is presently undertaken does non offer much chances for development in the Global South ; instead it aggravates the associated jobs which precipitated the initial out-migration.


The relationship between migration and development may be complex and hard to measure if one does non gestate and specify the nature of the two wide footings. Although, both constructs have been defined and interpreted in assorted ways and agencies but for the intent of the essay, a brief apprehension of the constructs will be made with a position to supplying a mention point for the paper.

Harmonizing to United Nations ( 2009 ) definition, migration is the crossing of the boundary of a political or administrative unit for a certain minimal period of clip. It includes the motion of refugees, displaced individuals, uprooted people every bit good as economic migrators. Internal migration refers to a move from one country ( a state, territory or municipality ) to another within one state while international migration is a territorial resettlement of people between nation-states.

The UN Convention on the Rights of Migrants defines a migratory worker as a “ individual who is to be engaged, is engaged or has been engaged in a compensated activity in a State of which he or she is non a national. ”

While it is much easier to gestate migration, development does non impart itself to such easiness. Development is a extremely contested construct ( Willis, 2005 ) . To many people development is either a procedure or an result that is frequently bad in footings of its impact on people and the societies in which they live, some others see development as both a procedure and an result and as needfully good.

Others see it as “ good alteration ” ( McGillivray, 2008: 21 ) . Multilateral bureaus such as the World Bank, IMF frequently use economic steps such as GNP per capita to measure development.

Due to the emerging fact that economic growing is a necessary but non a sufficient status for development ( Desai and Potter, 2008:1 ) , other broader indexs such as the UNDP Human Development Report which measures dimensions of development as an sum of income, life anticipation and literacy in relation to human wellbeing have been employed. Development is besides considered as a procedure of spread outing the existent freedoms that people enjoy ( Sen, 1999 ) .

Development could therefore be loosely considered as ‘the structural transmutation, the economic growing of national economic systems, coupled with a material betterment in the lives of their citizens evidenced in poorness decrease and increased equity ‘ ( Thomas, 2008:411 ) . In kernel, development was understood to intend lifting life criterions which would attest themselves in lifting incomes ( growing ) which in bend would interpret into improved wellness, nutrition, instruction and personal liberty ( Rapley 2007:185 ) .


There are associated costs and benefits of migration in both beginning and finish states either in the North or the Global South. These associated costs and benefits would non hold been a major challenge to chew over if the political relations of the planetary power has non been consistently entrenched against the latter.

As it was earlier mentioned that international migration is the human face of globalization and with globalization the inequalities among states have been intensified.

One of the impacts of migration on the Global South is Brain Drain and this constitutes a major factor why migration does non offer much chances for developing states. High labour engagement by migrators in Europe, the United States of America and Australia confirm that economic inducements remain high for migrators to those market economic systems ( OECD, 2005 ) .

This in itself would non hold been a job because most of the migrators ‘reap additions in the signifier of higher incomes, better entree to instruction and wellness, and improved chances for their kids ‘ ( HDR, 2009 ) . However, the selective in-migration policies of having provinces are a major subscriber to the developmental impacts on the origin state.

The policies are designed to choose the economic migrators who possess desirable socio-economic features and disallow others who do non hold. This is largely achieved through the late introduced Points System as practised in the United Kingdom, United States of America, Australia, and Canada etc to appliers who offer the right mix of accomplishments, capital and adaptability. In short, it is the recruiting of ‘global endowments ‘ ( Duncan, 2008 ; Goldin and Reinert, 2007 ) .

There has been an increasing common tendency among the developed states since the Points Based System ( PBS ) was foremost introduced in Canada ( 1967 ) , Australia ( 1972 ) , New Zealand ( 1991 ) , and United Kingdom ( 2002 ) and Canada for illustration is good known for its extremely selective in-migration policy, which places great accent on immigrants ‘ accomplishments ( Duncan, 2008:268 ) .

Since the 1970 ‘s there has been a pronounced addition in the outmigration of skilled workers from developing states ( World Bank, 2006 ) . Harmonizing to the OECD study ( 2009 ) , third alumnuss make up 35 per centum of working age immigrants to the OECD but merely about 6 per centum of the on the job age population in non OECD states.

Immigrants to the OECD from developing states tend to be of working age, for illustration over 80 per centum of those from Sub Saharan Africa autumn into this group. Another specific illustrations may do, 926 Ghanese physicians pattern in the OECD entirely, stand foring a much-needed 29 % of the physicians still rehearsing in Ghana ( ECA, 2006 ) and since 2000, about 16,000 nurses from Sub Saharan Africa have registered to work in the UK entirely ( Koser, 2007 ) .

The pertinent inquiry to inquire is ; why this outflows of economic migrators? The grounds are simple and it has been established ( Goldin and Reinert, 2007:171 ) that extremely skilled migrators are the most nomadic, are normally the wealthier and more economically productive than other members of their communities of beginning. Therefore, the universe ‘s poorest occupants are non – and are non likely to be – portion of international migration system.

Such out-migration from the developing states deprives them of a really important portion of their skilled human resources whom must hold been trained at considerable cost. It besides deprives the authorities of revenue enhancement gross since merely the economically productive has the capacity to execute such undertaking.

Unlike China, India, Phillipines, Taiwan that can claim “ encephalon addition ” after such economic migration, for a smattering of labour-exporting states such as Dominican Republic, El-Salvador, Guatemala, Jamaica and Mexico, migration takes a big portion of the best educated and therefore consequence in encephalon drain ( Koser, 2007 ; Adams, 2003 ) .

Another factor which has important developmental impacts on beginning states in the Global South is Remittances. It has been argued ( IMF, 2003 ) that the function of remittal in development and economic growing is non good understood and the study of a survey indicated that remittals do hold a negative consequence on economic growing. It besides indicated that the moral jeopardy job associated with remittals is terrible.

However, a batch of research plants ( Adams and Page, 2005 ; Maimbo and Ratha, 2005 ; Buch and Kuckulenz, 2004 ) has been carried out to explicate the relationship between migratory workers ‘ remittals and its effects on developing states and it has been argued that both international migration and remittals significantly cut down the degree, deepness, and badness of poorness in the underdeveloped universe.

Harmonizing to the World Bank ( 2009 ) , officially recorded remittal flows to developing states reached $ 338 billion in 2008, higher than the old estimation of $ 328 billion. It has been argued ( Ratha, 2005:20 ) that remittal flows rank behind lone Foreign Direct Investment ( FDI ) as a beginning of external support for developing states.

There is every chance that the bulk of remitters of these financess are the 50 million irregular migrators as mentioned earlier who do non normally emigrate with their households because they do non hold legal stay. So, the nature and extent of these remittals depend on who moves and how they fare abroad and whether they stay connected to their roots through flows of money, cognition and thoughts ( HDR, 2009 ) .

This is more telling because most of the extremely skilled emigres normally settle for good in the host states with their household. Some of the finish states such as Australia, Canada, New Zealand and United States of America frequently grant lasting abode to non refugee aliens ( IOM, 2005 ) .

Therefore, the extent of integrating in host states and relaxation of ties – perchance through communicating promotion – cut down the possibility of return migration ( Waldorf, 1996 cited in Duncan, 2008 ) . This being the instance, it removes any inducements for these persons to lend – in the signifier of remittals, investing, or accomplishments – to the development of their states of beginning, therefore taking to a lasting and complete loss for the beginning state.

Apart from the above, Remittances can really increase income inequalities in local communities because it is the rich who can migrate and direct back financess, it can ensue in currency grasp, they are non public money but instead personal flows which are frequently spent on consumable points ( IOM, 2005 ) .

It can make a “ civilization of migration ” in origin states whereby immature people see the evident wagess of migrating and topographic point unrealistic outlook on traveling abroad ( Koser, 2007: 46 ) . Recipients can diminish their labour force and there could be dependency by both persons and authoritiess.

It has been established ( Declaration of Cuernavaca, 2005:1 ) that ‘migrant exporting authoritiess identifies migrators and their remittals as strategic resources that can or should work out the economic and societal sufferings of their states ‘ . Reliance on remittals is likely to hold inauspicious effects on receivers ‘ households during economic crises as migratory workers are most vulnerable. The negative societal effects of remittals far outweigh the contributory positive impact.

1.4 Decision

Migration is cardinal to the development of all human societies and it has been one of the great invariables and permeant phenomenon of human history. Migration has supported the growing of the universe economic system, contributed to the development of provinces and societies and enriched many civilizations and civilizations.

It enriches the freedom of persons to take where to populate. However, the relationship between migration and development for the Global South in the context of out-migration of people from these developing states to the North does non offer much chance.

This is due to the policy attacks of the developed states in choosing the most productive economic migrators and recruiting of planetary endowments with the right mix of accomplishments, capital and adaptability from the developing states. Rather, it could ‘increase international inequalities and therefore aggravates the really jobs which caused the initial migration ‘ ( De Haan, 2006:36 ) .

Permanent outmigration of skilled labor airss developmental jobs for developing states. Permanent encephalon drain instead than encephalon addition occurs in Sub Saharan Africa where bulk of their extremely skilled human capital do non return because development eludes the state ( IOM, 2005 ) .

No uncertainty, migration can be a critical scheme for families and households seeking to diversify and better their supports particularly in developing states where a important part of their high skilled labour constitute international migrators of developed states, it is non and should non be considered as a replacement for broader development attempts ( HDR, 2009 ) . International migration even if good managed does non amount to a natural development scheme.


Adams, R. ( 2003 ) International Migration, Remittances, and the Brain Drain: A Study of 24 Labor-Exporting Countries POLICY RESEARCH WORKING PAPER 3069. Washington DC: World Bank

Adams, R. and Page, J. ( 2005 ) Do International Migration and Remittances Reduce Poverty in Developing States? World Development Vol. 33, No. 10, pp. 1645-1669, 2005


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