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Effect of Migration on the Economy

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Published: Mon, 20 Aug 2018

  • Volume of migration varies with the difficulty of surmounting difficulties. Greater the obstacles, lesser the volume of migration.

This statement is applicable in the local context as well. As Rodrigues form part of the Mauritius, no major obstacles have been found out. The main obstacle which was the cost of moving and living was solved by taking a loan and borrowing from friends and relatives. Hence the volume of migration was quite high due to no major obstacles and the ability of Rodriguans to surmount the remaining minor obstacles.

  • Volume of migration varies with fluctuations in the economy.

This is not really the case in Mauritius. The decision of migration is not much influenced by the economic condition in Mauritius. Most of them won’t consider the economic problems in Mauritius before migrating. According to them Mauritius has more employment opportunities then Rodrigues even times of economic depression.

  • Both rate and volume of migration tend to increase with time.

Lee’s findings are applicable in the local context as indeed the volume has increased with time. The process of migration from Rodrigues to Mauritius is quite smooth and does not involve long procedures. It is free of major obstacles and short trip of five hours. However, we are not sure if migration of Rodriguans to Mauritius will increase in the future. Major developments will be occurring in Rodrigues as stated recently by the Minister of Finance and also by the new government. Nevertheless, it depends how far promises will be delivered. If the aim of making Rodrigues a developed island is achieved, then migration will more probably decrease with time as during the survey, most of them said that they do want to return to Rodrigues one day if ever there will be employment opportunities available there.

  • People who have migrated once tend to migrate again.

This has neutral relevance in the local context as the answers gained were mixed. 49% of Rodriguans clearly refused to migrate migrate as they are used to Mauritius, also they are in the same Republic. The remaining persons were willing to migrate again.

Streams of migration

  • Migration tends to take place largely with in well-defined streams, that is from rural regions to towns and then towards major cities, implying migration occurs in stages instead of one long move.

This is partly true. Some Rodriguans lived in small and under developed places when they first migrated to Mauritius, examples are Roche Bois, Baie du Tombeau but are now residing in more developed regions where there are more facilities like Reduit, Beau Bassin/Rose Hill, and Long Mountain. Also, when asked, the majority of them said that if ever they get the chance to migrate to another country, they would do so. However, the above statement is partly wrong as many Rodriguans are still living in the same place where they were living when they first migrated. This doesn’t always happen as most of them don’t have the means to look for houses in developed regions. Lee’s hypothesis depends whether they have the means to move towards other regions or cities.

  • A counter-stream develops for every major migration stream.
  • Efficiency of streams tends to be high if the major factors behind the development of the stream are push factors at the place of origin.
  • Efficiency of streams and counter streams tend to be low if the origin and destination areas share similar characteristics.

Rodrigues and Mauritius have huge differences in terms of economic conditions and facilities. Hence, efficiency of streams and counter streams tend to be high.

  • Greater intervening obstacles mean more efficient migration streams.

Migrants overcome several intervening obstacles under compelling circumstances. Hence, such migration is taken seriously. Rodriguans who had financial issues and borrowed money from their surroundings can’t return to Rodrigues without being successful as they would be embarrassed in front of their families and friends.

  • Efficiency of migration streams varies with economic conditions.

The decision of migration is not much influenced by the economic condition in Mauritius. Most of them won’t consider the economic problems in Mauritius before migrating. According to them Mauritius has more employment opportunities then Rodrigues even times of economic depression.

Characteristics of migration

  • Migration is selective; high quality migrants tend to be selected positively.

This statement is not applicable in the local context as most migrants are of low calibre and there is no selective selection as such. Most of them are employed in the secondary sector where there is no need of being a high quality migrant while others who work in the tertiary sector may be required to follow some courses or training in Mauritius itself. Any Rodriguan who is willing to work and have the financial means to travel to Mauritius, followed by solved accommodation issues can come to Mauritius.

  • Migrants responding mainly to pull factors at destination tend to be positively selective. Their reason of moving is not because of compelling situations at the rural area but due to better opportunities at the urban destination.
  • Migrants who respond mainly to the push factors at the rural area tend to be negatively selected as they are mainly uneducated and unskilled people, having failed economically and socially.

Migrants from Rodrigues with even low literacy level are positively selected, they work in the secondary sector and some work in the primary sector of Mauritius while others may be required to follow some training to work in the tertiary sector. Rodriguans who migrate to Mauritius are not necessarily those who have failed economically and socially as they may simply want to migrate to improve their earnings.

  • When all migrants are considered together, selection for migration tends to be bimodal, some are responding to push factors while some are responding to pull factors.

It must be noted that a high proportion of migrants respond mainly to the push factors, especially people with low literacy levels.

  • Increasing intervening obstacles lead to increased positive selection as the weak and incapable migrants are wiped out.
  • Migration is age specific as propensity to migrate is higher during certain stages of the life cycle, especially for young people of working age.

This is highly accurate in the local context as it has been notes that people aged between 25-59 years old are more likely to migrate; these are people of working age.

  • The characteristics of migrants are in between the characteristics of the origin population and of the destination population.

As Rodrigues form part of Mauritius, we can note that Rodriguans are quite similar to Mauritians in terms of their way of talking, living, culture and norms.

Conclusion

It can be noted that migration is a function of the interplay of several push and pull factors, implying that there should be a cause for leaving Rodrigues as well as an attraction for Mauritius. When these two conditions are fulfilled, only then movement of Rodriguans will be possible. It can be said that the research findings substantiate considerably the main characteristics of the Lee Push Pull Migration theory discussed in Chapter Two – Literature Review. Hence, it can be concluded that the above evaluation offer a satisfactory explanation for the migration behaviour of Rodriguans to Mauritius.


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