The European Journal of Comparative Economics

ISSN: 1824-2979

EJCE Year: 2008, June. Volume: 5 - Issue: 1

The Determinants of Actual Migration and the Role of Wages and Unemployment in Albania: an Empirical Analysis

by Cristina Cattaneo

Start page: 3 - End page: 32

Keywords: Internal Migration ; Wage ; Unemployment ; Transitional Economy

Jel code: J61; J31; J64; P2


The paper explores the determinants of internal migration in Albania, adopting the Harris-Todaro approach to migration: an internal migration function is estimated using district wage and unemployment rate differentials. The aggregate level wages and unemployment, included in the migration equation, are retrieved from a first stage wage and unemployment equations, estimated controlling for personal characteristics. Moreover, in order to test the predictions of the human capital model of migration, the difference between migrants and non-migrants is emphasized in the estimation. The data source is the "Living Standard Measurement Survey for Albania" (2002), undertaken by the national Institute of Statistics and the World Bank jointly. The results reveal that both wage and unemployment differentials are important determinants of the propensity to migrate in Albania. This conclusion is further emphasized by noting that migrants gain substantially in terms of higher returns to individual characteristics after emigration.

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