CEPII, Recherche et Expertise sur l'economie mondiale
Changes in Migration Patterns and Remittances: Do Females and Skilled Migrants Remit More?

Maëlan Le Goff
Sara Salomone

 Highlights :
  • Using a new comprehensive dataset of bilateral remittances, this paper investigates whether changes in the composition by gender and education of migration flows may shape remittance patterns.
  • The estimations of a simple gravity model of remittances reveal that the share of females and skilled persons in the migration diaspora significantly increases annual remittances received in the country of origin.
  • The positive role played by females on remittances is mainly driven by skilled women compared with unskilled women.

 Abstract :
Migrants’ remittances to developing countries have significantly increased and turn out to be the second largest source of finance for developing countries after foreign direct investment. Besides, the composition of international migration flows has also changed being  characterized by a growing feminization and brain drain. In reviewing the literature on remittances, this survey shows that to fully estimate the role of remittances as a lifeline for developing countries the two above recent phenomena cannot be ignored. Indeed, using an original dataset on bilateral remittances and estimating a gravity model in which the gender and the skill dimensions of the migrants are taken into account, we find that both are positively associated with annual remittances received by origin countries. In particular, the main effect seems to be driven by skilled female migrants which presumably represent an important loss in terms of human capital in the perspective of a developing country.

 Keywords : International migration | Remittances | Brain Drain

 JEL : J16, f22
CEPII Working Paper
N°2015-15, September 2015

 Domaines d'expertise
Economies émergentes

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