DEFINITION of 'Emigration'

Emigration is the relocation of people from one country to reside in another. People emigrate for many reasons, include increasing one's chance of employment or improving quality of life. Emigration affects the economies of the countries involved in both positive and negative ways depending on the current state of the countries' economies.

BREAKING DOWN 'Emigration'

When people leave a country, they lower the nation's labor force and consumer spending. If the country they are leaving has an oversaturation of the labor force, this can relieve unemployment rates as a positive effect of emigration. On the other hand, the countries receiving the emigrants tend to benefit from more available workers, who also contribute to the economy by spending money. Most countries heavily regulate the number of people emigrating to the country and create strict rules and protocols for emigration.

Fiscal Impact of Emigration

When people emigrate to a new country, they pay taxes to the new country based on earnings and other factors. They also pay sales tax on purchases when applicable. These people qualify for social services provided by that country, such as education for dependent children, universal health care and other services depending on the country. Each country needs to ensure the new tax revenues match the additional expense for social services provided to the emigrants and their families.

Effect of Emigration on Job Market and Wages

When large groups of emigrants enter the job market in a new country, there is an effect on the available number of jobs and the amount of wages one can ask for a particular job. The new country must have enough job openings to support emigration without damaging the chances of the native-born labor force finding employment. Additionally, if an emigrant takes a job for a lower wage than typically offered to the native labor force, it can lower wages for both emigrants and the native population.

Rules for Emigration to the United States

The Immigration and Naturalization Act serves as the basis for emigration into the United States and allows for 675,000 permanent immigrants yearly. The country also provides emigration status to a certain number of refugees separate from this number. When choosing emigrants, the United States examines things such as family ties and unique job qualifications, and creating diversification within the country. The goal of this Act is to protect the American economy by making positive additions to the workforce and maintaining a healthy job market for American citizens.

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