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International Migration and Economic Integration

Understanding the Immigrant–Trade Link
Roger White, Associate Professor of Economics, Whittier College, US and Bedassa Tadesse, Associate Professor, University of Minnesota Duluth, US
This essential volume examines the influence of immigrants on the process of international economic integration – specifically, their influences on bilateral and multilateral trade flows. It extends beyond the identification and explanation of the immigrant–trade link and offers a more expansive treatment of the subject matter, making it the most comprehensive volume of its kind. The authors present abundant evidence that confirms the positive influences of immigrants on trade between their home and host countries; however the immigrant–trade link may not be universal. The operability of the link is found to depend on a variety of factors related to immigrants’ home countries, their host countries, the types of goods and services being traded and the anthropogenic characteristics of the immigrants themselves.
Extent: 328 pp
Hardback Price: £86.00 Online: £77.40
Publication Date: 2011
ISBN: 978 0 85793 066 8
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This essential volume examines the influence of immigrants on the process of international economic integration – specifically, their influences on bilateral and multilateral trade flows. It extends beyond the identification and explanation of the immigrant–trade link and offers a more expansive treatment of the subject matter, making it the most comprehensive volume of its kind. The authors present abundant evidence that confirms the positive influences of immigrants on trade between their home and host countries; however the immigrant–trade link may not be universal. The operability of the link is found to depend on a variety of factors related to immigrants’ home countries, their host countries, the types of goods and services being traded and the anthropogenic characteristics of the immigrants themselves.

Applying the augmented gravity model to data on trade and migration, International Migration and Economic Integration provides answers to the following questions:

• Do immigrants exert positive influences on trade between their respective host and home countries? Are the effects of immigrants on trade homogenous across different immigrant entry classifications? Do the influences of immigrants on trade in goods extend to trade in services? Are these influences homogenous across product types and industry/sector classifications?

• Do differences in relative levels of economic and/or social development for immigrants’ host and/or home countries affect the existence or the magnitude of the immigrant–trade link? Have immigration policies and changes in such policies influenced the immigrant–trade relationship?

• Do cultural differences between immigrants’ home and host countries inhibit trade flows and, if so, to what extent do the pro-trade influences of immigrants counter the trade-inhibiting effects of cultural distance?

• Is there variation in the pro-trade influences of immigrants across migration corridors? Is the influence of immigrants on trade conditional on the volume of trade taking place between their host and home countries? Are the effects of immigrants (emigrants) on trade universal? What factors/conditions correlate with the existence and operability of the immigrant–trade relationship?

Though ideally suited to advanced undergraduate and graduate students in international trade, international economics, public policy, sociology and international relations and their professors, this engaging work will also be relevant for anyone outside of academia who is interested in public policy, immigration, or international relations.
‘This important book illustrates once again the significant place that immigration has in the global economy in general, and with respect to international trade in particular. As both immigration and international trade grow over the 21st century, this relationship will become even more important. This book makes a valuable contribution to the study of that relationship’.
– Bill Marr, Canadian Studies in Population

‘Policy makers looking for scholarly perspective on immigration should take careful note of International Migration and Economic Integration. Its authors make a convincing case for the value that immigration will bring to their societies – and the losses these same societies are liable to incur if they attempt to slow immigration’s pace.’
– Rick Docksai, World Future Review
Contents: Preface Part I: Introducing the Immigrant–Trade Link 1. Migration, Trade and Globalization 2. The Gravity Model and the Literature on the Immigrant–Trade Link Part II: The Effects of Immigrants on International Trade in Goods and Services 3. Immigration Policy, Economic Development and the Immigrant–Trade Link: The Case of the White Australia Policy 4. East–West Migration and Trade: The Pro-Trade Effects of Immigrants in Italy 5. Beyond Trade in Goods: Immigrants and US Exports of Tourism Services Part III: The Cultural Bridging Effects of Immigrants on Trade 6. The Trade-Inhibiting Effects of Cultural Differences: Evidence from Nine OECD Countries 7. Immigrants and the Effects of Cultural Distance: An Examination of Aggregate US Trade Data 8. Heterogeneity Across Immigrant Groups: The Effects of Refugee and Non-Refugee Immigrants on US Trade Part IV: The Operability and Universality of the Immigrant–Trade Link 9. The Effects of Immigrants on Trade in Cultural and Non-Cultural Goods: Evidence from US State-Level Exports 10. Asymmetric Information and Trade-Facilitating Infrastructure: Variation in the Immigrant–Trade Link Across Migration Corridors 11. Transaction Costs and the Immigrant–Trade Link: Does the Volume of Bilateral Trade Matter? 12. Are the Effects of Immigrants (Emigrants) on Trade Universal? Part V: Findings, Implications and Questions that Remain 13. A Summary of Findings from the Application of the Gravity Model 14. Lessons Learned and Suggestions for Future Research References Index