Monday, January 18, 2010

Econ 101: foreign migrants are cheaper.

The title I came across, was from the freakonomics blog-site. The article can be found here:

The article refers to recent riots in Italy between migrant African workers and the local police. As per the article, it wasnt astounding to known that native Italians, dont do 'menial' work - like picking up produce from the fields. Instead, its the burden of the migrant worker to do such work. In fact, if you were an Italian you would be better off living on dole (government assistant) than actually working in the fields.

This should not be a surprise, because its the case in almost every country of the world. In one of the comments in the above link you might read that it is economically more profitable to fly an illegal immigrant from Haiti to Miami,USA and transport him/her to any city in the US to do the work, than hiring a local to do the same.

There was a similar situation in Kuwait back in 1999. You can find more details here: and here:
This too resulted in deportation of migrant worker ( egyptians) to Egypt. The Kuwaiti government was so psyched, that they decided to raise-down the entire locality of Khaitan ( presumed to be a Egyptian ghetto), to prevent further riots. This definitely didnt do a bit to improve the conditions of the workers, which was expected, instead it destroyed the livelihood of many migrants doing business in that area.

Well, I guess nothing is going to solve this issue of exploitation. The only way to prevent this is to provide the third -world countries with investment opportunities, which would prevent the migration.

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