Does International Migration Benefit the Sender Country? The Mexico-U.S. Case

Iván Mejía-Guevara, University of California, Berkeley
Alma Vega, University of California, Berkeley

The impact of Mexican immigration on the U.S. is a controversial subject of debate. However, far less work examines its effects on Mexico, most of which focuses solely on remittances. Using National Transfer Accounts (NTA) methodology, this study takes a broader approach to assessing the impact of emigration on Mexico by considering losses in forgone labor income and assets, as well as savings in not having to fund the consumption of emigrants and remittances. We introduce a methodology to quantify the effects of emigration on Mexico's demographic dividend as well as investment in educational human capital. Preliminary results suggest that remittances have the largest impact on Mexico's economy, equaling the combined effects of lost income, assets, and consumption. Moreover, emigration has had a relatively small effect on Mexico's demographic dividend and a portion of its GDP goes toward investing in the educational human capital of Mexican immigrants in the U.S.

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Presented in Session 59: Economic Change and Migration: International Perspectives