How responsive are remittances to recipients' welfare? Evidence from Fiji

Jimenez, Eliana V. and Brown, Richard P. C. (2013) How responsive are remittances to recipients' welfare? Evidence from Fiji. International Migration, 51 Supp. S1: e179-e201. doi:10.1111/j.1468-2435.2012.00764.x

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Author Jimenez, Eliana V.
Brown, Richard P. C.
Title How responsive are remittances to recipients' welfare? Evidence from Fiji
Journal name International Migration   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0020-7985
Publication date 2013-07
Year available 2012
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1111/j.1468-2435.2012.00764.x
Open Access Status
Volume 51
Issue Supp. S1
Start page e179
End page e201
Total pages 23
Place of publication Oxford, U.K.
Publisher Wiley-Blackwell Publishing
Collection year 2013
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Using data from a customized household survey in Fiji, we assess the extent to which remittances are motivated by the migrants’ commitment to provide social protection to their families back home. We test this hypothesis by estimating econometrically the responsiveness of migrants’ remittances to the perceived financial need of recipients. We extend a mixed-motives model of private transfers, incorporating household-specific, subjectively assessed welfare in place of the more generally used poverty-line measure of welfare. We find stronger evidence that remittances provide important social protection for the poorest when using our extended model. We also find a positive, but relatively much weaker, relationship for those above the poverty threshold, implying support for switching of motives once the household’s welfare has reached a level that is deemed adequate. We consider the possibility that welfare improvements in migrant-sending countries could increase or decrease remittance flows depending on pre-transfer welfare levels and other intervening factors. In relation to policy, we caution against policy interventions that could undermine the functioning of the informal social protection role of migration and remittances. We also caution against unwarranted concern over the use of remittances for consumption spending and the associated, misplaced policy measures to address this.
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ
Additional Notes Special Issue: International Migration And Remittances. Article first published online: 23 MAY 2012.

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2013 Collection
School of Public Health Publications
School of Economics Publications
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 2 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
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Created: Thu, 10 Mar 2011, 17:48:23 EST by Alys Hohnen on behalf of School of Economics