According to our Harris Interactive poll, immigration is the second topic that will count the most in the French’s choice for a future presidential election. Several candidates – Eric Zemour and Marine Le Pen – have made it a major theme of their campaign. Yet little serious work has been done on the economic effects of immigration. Five months before the presidential election, the Council for Economic Analysis (CAE) fills this void with a series of studies signed by the best experts on the subject. And turns the neck into many fantasies and preconceived ideas.
Immigration to France is relatively low
In 2019, the flow of immigrants according to the OECD was 292.00 people, or 0.4% of the French population. This is much lower than the average flow in other wealthy and European countries which reaches 0.85%. Similarly, the immigrant population in France represents about 12.8% of the total population, or 8.4 million people, compared to 13.6% in the United States, 13.7% in the United Kingdom, 16.1% in Germany, 19.5% in Sweden, and 21% in Sweden. Is. , Workers from other European countries also do not rush to come to France. They represent 30% of admissions as against over 60% in Germany, Ireland or Luxembourg.
Immigration is not sufficiently diverse and qualified
“Labor immigration, and skilled labor in particular, remains marginalized in our country”, dismay economists Emmanuel Auriol and Hillel Rapoport. The time seems distant when France attracted scientists, intellectuals, artists, etc. Since the 1990s, immigration has been “minimal” and has focused on family and humanitarian immigration. As a result, between 2000 and 2010, immigrant workers contributed only 3.5% to the increase in the number of highly qualified workers in France, compared with 10% in the United Kingdom and 7% in the United States or Sweden. and our country, 6th World Economic Power, 19. does not cometh Ranked in INSEAD’s ranking of countries to attract and retain foreign talent.
Immigration has no mechanical effect on wages
Contrary to another popular belief, the effect of migrant workers on the wages of the population is not mechanical. According to studies in the United States, doubling the number of immigrants would result in an average of 3% and 5% less for the less qualified. But studies on France have concluded opposite effects with increases in wages and employment, due to the displacement of native workers toward better-paying jobs and more dynamic areas. “Between 1990 and 2010, immigration had no effect on the wages of French natives, the economists wrote. Wages are independent of immigrants’ entry rates on average.”
Immigration fuels economic growth
“In public debate, immigrants are often presented as a burden on our economies,” regrets the Council for Economic Analysis. Nevertheless, in the scientific literature, “there is a general consensus that immigrants, by increasing the workforce and its diversity, make a positive contribution to the American economy”. Economists especially note that immigrants create more businesses and are more often sources of innovation. In the United States, immigrants represent 26% of entrepreneurs, compared to only 13% of the total population. About 44% of new high-tech companies in Silicon Valley have at least one immigrant of their founders. Several studies have also shown that the presence of immigrants facilitates exports to their countries of origin.
Immigration is useful against labor shortage
The labor shortage currently seen in many sectors is undoubtedly linked to the decline of immigration linked to the health crisis. This is the economists’ suggestion, noting that “the sectors that most appealed to migrant workers in 2018 are those that report labor shortages today, particularly in construction and hotels and restaurants”. In 2008, the easing of conditions for the recruitment of foreign workers already made it possible to meet labor shortages in some sectors. Unskilled immigration is also developmentally favorable by increasing the supply of personal services (childcare, cleaning, etc.), facilitating the work of non-immigrant women, note the economists.
France’s deficit does not increase with immigration
According to various studies, the impact of immigration on the public accounts of wealthy countries varies between +0.5% of GDP and -0.5% of GDP. “Studies focused on OECD countries indicate that immigration does not increase the public deficit, note economists Emmanuel Auriol and Hillel Rapoport. Recent studies on France reach the same conclusion. This is explained by the fact that the French The immigrant population, although over-represented among the unemployed and beneficiaries of some social assistance, is concentrated in active age groups, which on average have a positive contribution to the state budget.”
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