In their new book, Oxford professors Ian Goldin and Geoffrey Cameron give five reasons why the world must continue to embrace the migration of people from one country to another. First and foremost, migrants have long been the engine of the world economy, they say: “The movement of people has fuelled the development of modern economies. Migrants promote innovation, connect markets, fill labor gaps, reduce poverty and enrich social diversity.” Goldin and Cameron recognize that some communities are disproportionately affected by immigrants, but that governments can institute burden-sharing policies.
What’s the Big Idea?
Goldin and Cameron say societies focus too much on the negative side of immigration. So what is the positive side, specifically? “The World Bank estimates that increasing migration equal to 3% of the workforce in developed countries between 2005 and 2025 would generate global gains of $356 billion.” Immigration will be especially important in the future because of declining birth rates in the West post its World War Two baby-boom generation. The fewer native-born workers should be complemented by immigrant labor.