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Migration Choice as a Determinant of Remittance Behaviour in Canada

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Immigrant remittances are an important force in developing economies, but these transfers of money also play a role in indicating economic and social attachment of migrants to both origin and destination country. This project examines the determinants of migrant remittances from Canada to 129 countries of origin. After reviewing previous Canadian literature, it hypothesizes that differences in migrant origin through forced and unforced movement (i.e. economic and refugee categories as defined in Canada) are a significant determinant. Modeled alongside are indicators of the origin countries’ economic strength and overall dependency on these flows, as well as indicators for the origin group in Canada such as average earnings and linguistic distance. The analysis finds a negative relationship between remittances and the proportion of refugees in a group, while also finding positive relationships with origin country per capita income, the proportion of that country’s GDP made up by remittances and language distance from Canadian languages. The analysis indicates that forcibly displaced migrants show clear differences in their ability to remit from voluntary migrants. The importance of these findings is in their implications for both general immigration policies and development strategies in general.
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