In the last post I looked at the issue of unfair trade agreements an their role in economic migration. In this thread I would like to look at the value of economic migrants.
I has been a few days since my last post and in those days I watched an interesting documentary called The End of the Line. The documentary looked at two issues that I have written about here and the other is one of immigration. The fisher man from Senegal has been priced out of the market by European fishing companies who have been sold rights to fish here by the government, This has meant that his daily catch is only worth $6 and he spends $4 on that on fuel. he says he wants to provide for his family but cannot see how and the only option left to him is to make the dangerous journey to Europe. There is nothing left here for him.
Interestingly too, one of the professional interviewed said that this is a growing trend in this part of Senegal but sadly whilst “they want our fish, we are not welcome in Europe” Unfair Trade terms?
Economic Migrants or the Diaspora are very useful to the economic development of their country of origin because of the money they send home. Ireland is one such country that depended heavily on these remittances until recently. African countries rely heavily on these remittances too and in 2008 these amounted to $780 million dollars in Uganda alone. Those are staggering amounts of money to a country whose GDP was up until recently made up of 70% of AID money.
There is a benefit too for the donor agencies, with the economic migrants remitting money to their countries of origin, in theory it should mean that AID to a given country may eventually reduce and thus ease the burden on it’s tax payers. This is how it work in theory and the money remitted by the economic migrants is often much more than the AID a given country might receive. The reality however is that these remittances are not structured in such way as to aid development. instead the money is sent to family members for personal consumption
We have also heard cries of “they come here and take our jobs” my question why are these jobs available for the new comers to take?
The BBC carried out an experiment to dispel this myth once and for all, find out what happened when immigrants were withdrawn from their jobs in Wisbech Cambridgeshire here
Although the economic migrants will and may do jobs that the locals do not want to do there is no doubt that the increase in an area’s population will have an impact upon other resources such as health school, housing.
There is an indirect cost to the homelands of the economic migrants too known as the brain drain countries lose their skilled personnel to other countries and the imapct of such brain drain will vary from country to ocuntry with the least developed countries suffering the most.
The question is how do you balance all this out?
Have got a view on any of issues raised here, if so it will be great to hear from you