The World Bank have released a report saying that the current large-scale mass migration happening around the world, could have a positive effect in the global economy in the coming decades.
The report, titled Development Goals in an Era of Demographic Change, says that mass migration will “reshape economic development for decades and, while posing challenges, offers a path to ending extreme poverty and shared prosperity”.
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In a statement, World Bank President Jim Yong Kim said “With the right set of policies, this era of demographic change can be an engine of economic growth… If countries with aging populations can create a path for refugees and migrants to participate in the economy, everyone benefits.
“Most of the evidence suggests that migrants will work hard and contribute more in taxes than they consume in social services.”
Last week, in a blog originally published by the Washington Post, Kim discussed his roots as a migrant: “In 1964, I came to the United States from South Korea, then an extremely poor developing country that most experts, including those at the World Bank, had written off as having little hope for economic growth”
He added that there are huge economic benefits, as well as humanitarian ones: “Countries that welcome refugees, and help other countries to productively host them, will be doing the right thing — both for our fellow human beings who are suffering and for the global economy.”
Hundreds of thousands of migrants have fled from the Middle East into Europe in recent months, and scenes of migrants crammed onto trains and walking along motorways trying to find safety are burned into the public consciousness.
There has been much debate about impact these refugees could have on the global economy, as well as national economies. This week, British home secretary Theresa May made a speech at the Conservative party conference that questioned positive economic impact of immigration, saying that mass migration has “close to zero” economic upside.