Migration and Economic Growth: A 21st Century Perspective
New Zealand Treasury Working Paper 06/02
Published March 2006
Author: Cat Moody
While there is extensive literature on the determinants of migration and its microeconomic effects, the New Zealand theoretical or empirical literature specifically examining the effects of migration on economic growth is not as comprehensive. In New Zealand there has been an implicit underlying assumption that immigration is good for economic growth, as evidenced by the attempted use of immigration to resolve particular labour market problems. This paper uses the growth accounting policy framework to discuss the mechanisms through which immigration can impact economic growth. It reviews the contemporary literature with a view to identifying how immigration policy may be adjusted to improve the potential returns to growth from immigration in New Zealand.
The author would like to thank Veronica Jacobsen, Geoff Lewis, Peter Wilson, Richard Bedford, Glenn Goldsmith, John Bryant, Mark Sowden, Grant Johnston and Tim Smith. All errors or omissions are my own.
The views, opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this Working Paper are strictly those of the author(s). They do not necessarily reflect the views of the New Zealand Treasury. The Treasury takes no responsibility for any errors or omissions in, or for the correctness of, the information contained in these working papers. The paper is presented not as policy, but with a view to inform and stimulate wider debate.