Differences between sending and host immigration countries

One way to look at international migration is to compare incomes between a host country, such as the U.S. and Germany, to the major source of immigrants, such as Mexico and Poland. In the table below, I show five host countries (U.S., U.K., Canada, Australia and Germany) with their leading source countries. For the U.S. I include another source country, El Salvador.

The table shows the host country, the leading source country, the percentage of all immigrants associated with that host country, and the ratio of personal income. Personal income is GDP per capita, adjusted by Purchasing power parity (PPP), which uses local prices adjust for the purchasing power.

In this table we see two host countries with a significant share of immigrants from a contiguous country: the U.S. with Mexico, and Germany with Poland.  The table reveals the economic incentives to migrate and implied control of a host country over immigration flows. For example, the ratio of adjusted income between the U.S. and Mexico is 3.1, and between the U.S. and El Salvador 7.2.  Even in today’s hot Mexican border environment, a migrant might be very incented to slip over the border or to apply for asylee status.

Host Sending % of Imm Diff $ Per Cap
US. Mexico 23% 3.1
U.S. El Salvador 3% 7.2
U.K. India 10% 7.1
Canada China 9% 3.1
Australia U.K. 17% 1.1
Germany Poland 33% 1.7

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