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Mexican Migration to the United States of America under NAFTA: Reasons and Policy Recommendations

Mexican Migration to the United States of America under NAFTA: Reasons and Policy Recommendations

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Revision with unchanged content. The increase in Mexican migration to the United States in recent years consti­tutes one of the most divisive issues in the US-Mexican relationship. The pheno­menon is especially interesting and puzzling if considered that it contra­dicts the traditional economic models that consider trade and migra­tion to be perfect substitutes. According to these models, increased trade should reduce the incentives for migration from poor to relatively wealthier countries. So why has this not been the case between Mexico and the US; two countries that have fairly liberalized their trade since 1993 under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA)? The author Jana Kopyciok describes the reasons for the increase in Mexican migration to the US in recent years focusing on why trade liberalization under NAFTA so far has not stemmed the migration flow between the two countries. She also proposes policy recommendations on how the US and Mexico should deal with the migration flow, laying the focus on the US point of view. The paper is directed to research scholars, political economists, and all those interested to learn about the migration phenomenon from a macroeconomic point of view.