The Philippines: Globalization and Migration
By Anny Misa Hefti
Globalization is synonymous to the phenomenon of acceleration. For the past 25 years rapid changes have affected political, economic and social developments. Acceleration is seen in vast technological changes, media revolution, global economic integration and massive changes in production systems and labour markets. All these rapid increases in transnational flow of capital, trade and technology have marked its effects on international migration as well. Global economic restructuring has led not only to disruption in less developed or developing economies, it has also been a factor in unemployment, wage decline or job insecurity in dominant market economies.1Heavily indebted countries, like the Philippines have resorted to labor export to help them afloat. But, I will not delve on this issue here, as this is the expertise of my colleagues, Dr. Bello and Ms. Rodriguez.
What to me has considerable impact on international migration is the globalization of technology especially communications technology. Fax and telephone have replaced what used to be snail-pace letter communication. Relations between immigrant communities abroad and home communities have been facilitated by these new possibilites. The globalization of mass communication including TV, film, video and music has reinforced dreams of easy life abroad. These "imagined lives" reach even to peasants in remote villages. Migration becomes very attractive. Impact of globalization on Migration
Contemporary views on migration depart from the earlier premise of the push-pull theory on migration. According to this theory, people moved either because social and economic forces in the place of destination impelled them to do so, or because they were attracted to places of destination by one or more social and economic factors there. Observers of migration flows have long seen the vast changing nature of migration. What used to be purely economic reasons for migrating no longer hold in many cases. Globalization of communication technology has affected extensively the original impetus of individuals to migrate. Linkages between receiving and sending countries are readily established. Networks connect migrants and non-migrants, where news and information are shared. This sustains the flow of migration. Studying networks particularly those linked with families and households sheds an understanding in the development and encouragement in additional migration. Let us take an example on the issue of the so-called "mail-order brides" - a rather degrading label. I use this term now, so we know what I am talking about. In early 1980, many Filipinas married Western men through contracts with agencies or through newspaper ads. As they settled down in these countries, they "invited" friends and relatives to visit them who either find work or also get married. In the USA, family reunification has been the main source of increased immigration. One study indicated that 41% of pre-arranged employment of Filipinas in Italy was done by a member of the family.3 Chain migration especially in family units is of special interest to migration researches.
On the aspect of direct labour recruitment, where family reunification is oftentimes not possible, increased migration is still evident because of networking. Job opportunities are readily shared. Earlier migrants assist subsequent migrants with accommodations, jobs, and contacts. Individuals from home countries hear of these successes thus encouraging further migration. Migration may continue even after the initial impetus for migration no longer exists.
Impact on countries of origin
Filipinos, being extremely family-centered, would above all remit earnings to the family left behind. The standard of living of these families would improve considerably, and their status in the community elevated commensurate to the remitted green bucks.
...Migration to | 1951-60 | 1961-70 | 1971-80 | 1981-90 |
US | | | | |
From India | 2,120 | 31,214 | 1,72,080 | 2,61,841 |
From all countries | 25,15,000 | 33,22,000 | 44,93,000 | 73,38,000 |
India’s Share(%) | (0.1) | (0.9) | (3.8) | (3.6) |
Canada | | | | |
From India | 2,802 | 25,722 | 72,903 | 79,304 |
From all countries | 15,74,841 | 14,09,677 | 14,40,338 | 13,36,767 |
India’s Share(%) | (0.2) | (1.8) | (5.1) | (5.9) |
UK | | | | |
From India | n.a | 1,25,600 | 83,040 | 51,480 |
From all countries | n.a | 6,35,000 | 7,32,900 | 5,16,870 |
India’s Share(%) | n.a | (19.8) | (11.3) | (10.0) |
SOURCE: NAYYAR, 1994
Suggestions and recommendations
Some specific suggestions relating to international
labour migration are:
1. Developing migration information systems:
One of the areas requiring immediate policy intervention is the creation of an appropriate information system on international emigration. This would enable closer surveillance and better management of emigration.
The status of out-migrant data can be improved by making the registration of entry by migrant workers mandatory in the Indian missions operating in labour receiving countries. The nature of outflow data at home can be strengthened by a fuller utilisation of the data already available with government departments and recruitment agencies. A chief requirement in this connection would be the strengthening of the statistical...
Also, around the world an estimated 215 million boys and girls are engaged in child labour4 as defined in ILO Convention No. 1385 and the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child.
Migration can be an important determinant for child labour. The recently adopted Roadmap for Achieving the Elimination of the Worst Forms of Child Labour7 recognizes the need to address child vulnerabilities related to migration. In article 5 it states: ‘Governments should consider ways to address the potential vulnerability of children to, in particular the worst forms of child labour, in the context of migratory flows’.
Based on a desk review of literature and consultations with field staff, this working paper explores how migration - both internal and international – can affect children’s involvement in child labour. The paper focuses on voluntary migration, excludes child trafficking8 and distinguishes three categories as follows: 1) children who migrate with their parents (i.e. family migration), 2) independent child migrants, and 3) children left-behind by migrant parents. The link to child labour of each of these categories is explored below, followed by a series of strategic considerations for action. In reviewing evidence related to the three categories, both internal and international migration are covered interchangeably
Globally, 1 in 8 persons is a migrant. This includes an estimated 214...
...Causes of migration
The causes of migration may be numerous and these may range from natural calamities, climatic change, epidemics, and draught to social, economic, cultural and political. The over population and heavy pressure on resources may be the cause of permanent or temporary, and long distance or short distance migration. Many a time the differences between groups in level of technology and economic opportunities also cause large scalemigration.
People with more sophisticated technology may evade and conquer new areas. Contrary to this, less advanced groups may be attracted to the greater opportunities provided by more developed society. For example, ancient romans conquered vast areas in Europe, North Africa and south west Asia. During this period, many people migrated to Rome which provided better economic and employment opportunities.
After the industrial revolution in 1779, the Europeans emigrated to North America, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and South America. The large scale emigration from European countries continued up to the first part of the 20thcentury and the main reason was to colonise the under developed countries and to exploit their resources.
(b) Economic causes
One of the prime motives of emigration seems to be economic. Man’s need to have a virgin land to till has inspired him to migrate to distant areas. It was because of this reason that the slaves...
...The Dark Side of International Migration
There are now a record high of 232 million people living and working outside their countries of origin, generating over 400 billion dollars annually in remittances, and counting.3
Migrant earnings were nearly four times the 126 billion dollars in official development assistance (ODA) from rich to poor nations last year, according to figures released by the United Nations.
The river of cash flowing into developing countries, including India, Bangladesh, Morocco, Mexico, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Egypt and the Philippines, is one of the more positive effects of migration.
But what is a blessing for some is a calamity for others.
On the darker side is the continued exploitation of migrants, mostly in the Middle East, because of an increase in "slave labour" where workers suffer from low wages, inadequate medical care and atrocious working conditions.
Joseph Chamie, a former director of the U.N. Population Division who has written extensively on international migration, told IPS that while there is generally universal condemnation of such migrant "slave" labour, prohibitions are difficult to enforce, as it often takes place in households and small work sites.
One strategy to address this is the International Labour Organisation's Domestic Worker's Convention, aimed at stopping the abuse of domestic workers, which went into effect last month.
Speaking on the eve of a high-level dialogue on...
Benefits and Drawbacks of MigrationMigration is one of the most liquid aspects of geography, as so much is happening (people are constantly shifting), that it makes it hard to keep track of all the movement. However, migration still is a foundational aspect of human society today as it is what causes the majority of the fluctuation in the country’s economic and cultural status.
This being said, the impacts thatmigration can have on both the source country and the destination country can be positive or negative, therefore it is important to create a balance between the immigration and emigration of the country.
One of the possible benefits that the destination country can reap from the influx of migrants is the huge workforce that is now suddenly available to the country. For example, in the early 20th Century, a large amount of Mexicans migrated north into the US, due to political unrest within Mexico itself. However, this was a lucky coincidence for the US government as they were suddenly supplied with a humungous workforce, who were willing to work long hours for little pay: the solution that the US government was looking for. With the large influx of Mexicans, the US government was able to fill up all the job vacancies within the country (especially those with lower pay), thus stabilizing its economy for the future.
However, this influx has also produced issues within America, as the constant...
...CH 29 Migration and Remittances
A Case study of the Caribbean
Migration has always been a part of the Caribbean people’s culture whether it be for economic or safety reasons. There has been 3 major migration periods of migration. Firstly in the 1930’s people went to the do work on the Panama Canal in Central America. The second was in the 1950’s to work as nurses and in the transportation sector in the UK. The third period was in the 1960’s to the US and Canada. The logical explanation of migration of workers is the inflow of cash to support family, investments, development and various purposes. We also note that very little imperical work has been done to evaluate the contribution of remittances to economic development. The collected data has been used to estimate balance of payment flows and not to ascertain local income generation and no distinction is made between current and capital remittances. According to the economist (2007) global remittances in that year reached $318 billion up from $170 billion in 2002. The majority of these remittances go to developing countries and the largest recipients are Latin America and the Caribbean.
The Concept of remittances
The transfer of earnings or accumulated wealth to the origin country of migrants is known as remittances. This is viewed as a source of support for dependents, repayments, investments ect. The...
...Social Cost of Migration on families/children
It is not only now that migration of parents have been prevalent, it has been a long debated topic among foundations that focus on the welfare of the family and of the children. Due to the Philippines’ long history of low unemployment rate, many a family has resorted to migration, that is, looking for jobs abroad so as to support their family in their country of origin. The process ofmigration, no matter how beneficial to the family income-wise has effects on the family being left at home. Although migration has a couple of positive effects, its negative effects have greater weight as opposed to its positive counterpart.
So far there had been one common purpose for parental migration in foreign countries, that is, to support their families at home. In the last decade, remittances have been the second largest source of income for most families in developing countries. Remittances, not just help support families of migrants but it also contributes to the aggregate strength of the country’s peso value against other currencies. Therefore, migrants do not only help their own families but in the process they become modern heroes of the country. It also “…relaxes the household budget, enables households in developing countries to increase expenditures on health, to invest in the human capital of children reducing labour...