At the start of a new millenary, migration has become more apparent than of all time before. Turning political instability around the universe, tied with the fact that economic growing is significantly worsening, has resulted in the uprooting and supplanting of 1000000s of people either for political, environmental or economic grounds. Rising poorness is forcing these persons to travel in hunt of work and a better. Images of a better life in The Bahamas, and so the universe are being published through the media that now reaches the most distant countries and communities of many poorer states such as Haiti. This research endeavored to explicate the pros and cons of migration in the Bahamian society Benefits include an addition in labour supply, and a lessening in rewards. In contrast, the negative effects include increased fight in the occupation market and a possible addition in unemployment for locals

Research Questions / Goals

Migration is an of import constituent of population surveies. Discourse the pros and cons of migration in Bahamian society.

The pros and cons of migration in the Bahamian society is the focal point of this research paper. This paper will try to analyze the effects of international migration on labour supply, rewards, the occupation market and unemployment.

Restrictions and boundary lines

Unfortunately, there is really small published research on the impact of migration on the Bahamas. Therefore, the research attack undertaken involved the usage of secondary informations from both international and local organisations along with modern-day Hagiographas from local economic experts ‘ in order to obtain an nonsubjective overview of the benefits and deductions of migration on the Bahamas. This research is limited in any conclusive consequences on the impact of migration, as the Government of The Bahamas has non tabled any qualitative or quantitative research holistically sketching the impact of migration on The Bahamas.


This is an explorative research used secondary informations to find the pros and cons of migration in Bahamian society. Relevant data pertinent to this research was collected through a secondary research method including archival research, internet-based research and library research. Additionally, a comparative survey of different international and peer-reviewed paperss relevant to this paper was carried out ; and a series of theories, constructs and thoughts were summarize and explored.


In a universe of intensifying poorness, natural catastrophes, economic instability and inauspicious environmental alterations, 1000s of households are daily uprooted out of their fatherlands and forced to migrate to other parts of the universe in hunt of a better manner of life. Many of them have to face and last the hindrance presented by nature, along with the many physical and psychological challenges that they encounter along their migratory journey and while absorbing into a new state. Paradoxically, many of them win in encompassing the better hereafter they were looking for, whereas, many of them see the exact antonym of their hopes and dreams.

Harmonizing to Britannica Encyclopedia Migration apparently falls into several wide classs. “ First, internal and international migration must be distinguished. Within any state there are motions of persons and households from one country to another ( for illustration, from rural countries to the metropoliss ) , whereas, international migration is motion from one state to another. Second, migration may be voluntary or forced. Most voluntary migration, whether internal or external, is undertaken in hunt of better economic chances or lodging. Forced migrations normally involve people who have been expelled by authoritiess during war or other political turbulences or who have been forcibly transported as slaves or captives. Intermediate between these two classs are the voluntary migrations of refugees flying war, dearth, or natural catastrophes ” .

The United Nations ( UN ) and The International Organization of Labour ( ILO ) estimations, out of the 175 million migrators world-wide, 120 million are migratory workers and their households. Today, ILO estimates, there are approximately 20 million migratory workers, migrators and members of their households across Africa, 18 million in North America, 12 million in Central and South America, 7 million in South and East Asia, 9 million in the Middle East and 30 million across all of Europe. Western Europe entirely accounts for about 9 million economically active aliens along with 13 million dependents.

Over the last several decennaries, The Bahamas has experienced a important rush in the in-migration population. Harmonizing to the 2008 Annual Report from the Department of Statistics “ one in eight occupants in the Bahamas is foreign born, reflecting a 61 per centum addition in the nonnative population over a decennary since 1990, and a 21 per centum rise over the last six old ages ” ( 2008 Annual Report ) . It is estimated that by 2025, the population will duplicate, with the Bahamas deriving an extra 337,000 occupants from outside of the state. Migrants are the fastest turning section of the population in this state. “ In Nassau entirely, between1990 and 2000 there was a 43 per centum addition in the foreign born-population. Presently there are 250,000 individuals who are occupants of Nassau, an estimated 17 per centum of whom are foreign born harmonizing to The Department of Immigration ( 2006 Annual Report, Department of Immigration ) . The Bahamas for decennaries offered unequal societal, political and economic chances for most migrators seeking a better manner of life, because of these chances many migrators migrate to the Bahamas for economic grounds than the state is willing to acknowledge.

Professionals and Cons of International Migration in Bahamian Society

The Bahamas ‘ economic system is little, unfastened and harmonizing to Kevin Higgins, it exhibits all the features of Caribbean type economic system. It differs in growing pattern traveling from primary production to third production or a service based economic system. This growing has lead to high degrees of national income and a dependence on import. Labour markets in the Bahamas are absolutely competitory due to the presence of brotherhoods and accordingly are merely able to set in the long-run. This inactive in pay puting requires authorities intercession during period of economic downswing to guarantee accomplishment of optimum employment degree and limited direction of employer feasible cost. International migration has both benefits and negative effects in Bahamian society. Benefits include an addition in labour supply, and a lessening in rewards. In contrast, the negative effects include increased fight in the occupation market and a possible addition in unemployment for locals. However, the instance for make up one’s minding how to manage the monolithic reaching of international migrators will finally depend on how one position our national aims.

An International Monetary Fund ( IMF ) study entitled Workers ‘ Remittances ; cites that loosen uping in-migration policy could bring forth significant economic benefits. It acknowledges that the addition in labour supply will lend to diminish in rewards. Business proprietors in the Bahamas are likely to welcome this, as it would stand for a lessening in their operating cost and another chance to optimise net income. Likewise, an addition migratory population can assist to cut down labour deficits in countries in which Bahamians are non inclined to work such as agribusiness. Second, it can increase productiveness in such countries. Some surveies show migrators are more receptive to market forces. Third, the local disbursement by migrators in contrast to indigens enhances what economic experts ‘ term, “ the multiplier consequence ” within the economic system, which allows for increased internal circulation of monies therefore, making more concern chances for locals. In 2004, the former governor of the Central Bank of the Bahamas Julian Francis called for allowance of more foreign labor to countervail on-going high pay demand of labour brotherhoods, which he considered unreasonable, recommending for policy alteration in respects to migrant.

However, for the local workers and their brotherhood lessening rewards, can ensue in increased occupation inefficiencies and potentially increase unemployment for locals. Harmonizing to the same study generated by Ratha, a survey by Borjas, Feeman and Kaz for the IMF it founded that the consequence of in-migration on rewards were negative in the US with a 21 % addition in unskilled migratory workers cut downing pay net incomes of all unskilled workers by 5 % . It cited another survey by Smith and Edmonston ( 1997 ) which found that unskilled workers with no high school instruction were a financial load on subsequent coevalss.

The occupant work force in The Bahamas is apparently more incline to work or take the traditionally approved white neckband occupations where wages are higher therefore, doing it more effortless for migratory workers to make full vacancies in the alleged dirty, hard and unsafe occupation countries. However, states with a limited work force and a little population like the Bahamas would be at a disadvantage to states with larger populations, as citizens of these thickly settled states like Haiti, Jamaica and Trinidad with weaker economic systems would migrate to the Bahamas due to its strong economic place, as is the current crisis with migrators. This was the cardinal grounds behind the Bahamian refusal to subscribe on to the Caribbean Single Market Economy, which required the free motion of labor. Today dreamer would reason that restricting one to the state of birth or beginning is outdated and that we are citizens of the universe. Further suggesting that mass migration, integrating by assorted states e.g. Caricom and the Caribbean Single Market Economy, European Economic Community, the propose transportation of rights and sovereignty from single states to the regulating organic structures and therefore, the ensuing Torahs aimed at coordination within these states, impacting free motion of people, is non outdated and simply a hinderance to advancement.

Many migrators geting in The Bahamas, particularly those from poorer states such as Haiti have a low educational degree and are more likely to be unemployed or economically inactive than the domestic population. The societal cost of migration is hard to quantity in the absence of holistic empirical informations deuced through uninterrupted research. This include the increased cost on both the educational and medical service as the Bahamas is a portion of international pacts and conventions to do such services available to all individuals notwithstanding their legal position. Additionally there is the farther cost of cultural fright generated by little pocket communities, possible addition in offense, development of societal crises autochthonal to the migratory civilization, uncontrolled population enlargement and other negative outwardnesss that migration nowadayss. With a high influx of migrators there is ever an increased force per unit area on the public assistance of the province and the taxpayers will finally hold to pay for the increased degree of authorities disbursement needed to widen the economic system ‘s substructure. Additionally, there is besides a hazard of higher unemployment if the arriving migrators do non fit the demands of the turning industries in the economic system therefore, taking to an increased force per unit area on scarce resources.

Unfortunately, our major industry touristry is still smothering due to the continued rise in fuel monetary values and the oncoming of problem in the universe fiscal markets. The touristry industry saw a diminution in sail gross in 2006. In 2007 sea visitants which represents 67.7 % of all visitants declined by 4.0 % to 3.1 million and air visitants by 0.4 % to 1.49 million ( Central Bank 2007 ) . This contributed to worsening Numberss at Bahmar, Atlantis, and Our Lucaya hotels who experienced important lay-offs in 2008. Additionally the Bahamas economic system declined from 9 % in 2006 to.6 % in 2007 and about crashing to 1.0 % in 2008. This was influence by the planetary fiscal meltdown and a positive additive addition in the monetary value per barrel of oil from B $ 37.41 to B $ 64.20 from 2004 to 2007 and its inauspicious impact on fuel cost locally ( Central Bank 2007 ) . However, most surveies conclude that migrators do non needfully vie with local workers for the same occupations. This is because labor markets in the receiving states are frequently segmented and local workers may wish to avoid certain humble occupations.

Craton and Saunders ( 2000 ) in an historical analysis of migration from the 1950s to the mid-1990s, including a thorough description of Haitian-Bahamian dealingss during that period asserted that Haitian subjects were blamed for every societal and medical ailment imaginable: Terbium, cholera, AIDS, malaria, harlotry, drug dealing, larceny, violent offense, pack warfare, etc. ( Robertson, 2002, National Commission on Crime, 1998 ) . Many or possibly all of them were viewed as increasing fight in domestic occupation markets and as an inordinate load on The Bahamas societal and medical substructure, and the ground for the addition cost of national security and eroding of cultural values. Additionally there was contagious fright generated and circulated by indigens, trumpeter by the mass media, and proliferated by political dockets that the coming of migrators into The Bahamas in peculiar Haitian migrators meant a possible addition in offense, and the development of societal crises autochthonal to the migratory civilization – influenced and catapulted by uncontrolled population enlargement and other negative external state of affairss that migration nowadayss.

Local Economist Olivia Saunders states that “ when the labor market in The Bahamas is dense the economic system additions from new labor influxs but the effects could be uneven on different groups of the population ” ( Saunders pg. 3 ) . Since most migrators coming to The Bahamas are low skilled workers, employers of low pay labor and consumers of agricultural and fishing merchandises, would be in a better place to profit. But high labor influxs could cut down rewards and other benefits at the lower terminal of the work force. For a state like The Bahamas that already faces high unemployment, as in the Western World today, migration implies extra competition in the labor market. With the progresss of globalisation, the decreasing reachings of air and sea tourers, the climb oil monetary values, and the changeless demands for more monies to run into the wages of public retainers, increased migration could present as a serious hurt to our labour industry, where more and more Bahamians are being forced to take occupations that were one time reserved for migrators. However, most surveies conclude that migrators do non needfully vie with local workers for the same occupations. As aforesaid this is because labor markets in the receiving states are frequently segmented and local workers may wish to avoid certain humble occupations. The turning influxs of migrators in The Bahamas will necessarily diminish the existent rewards of domestic workers and lead to an addition in low skilled workers, therefore driving down the equilibrium pay for domestic low-skilled employees.

Another con of migration in general is the scheme by some states to utilize the migration and eventful citizenship of its subjects in other states as agencies of endurance and set uping a sub-state within another state. Therefore, spread outing their political power as is the overriding fright in the Bahamas of a Haitian rebellion. Therefore, states combating mass migration must be on guard against a displacement in political power that would promote other states to work migration and eventful citizenship to their advantage. These fresh citizens send money and resources back place, set up communities that bound them with their place state, utilizing such to derive political advantage and so the international advantage for fatherland.

Some subjects who attain political power have the chance to find and act upon the behaviour of their new state and its inter-relation with their former place.[ 1 ]The experience of Florida in the 1980 ‘s is a recent illustration. The ‘Cubanisation ‘ of Miami occurred within South Floridian political relations and The State of Florida economic patterns have greatly been affected by its migrator thickly settled. The Cuban migrators have become the most of import determination shapers with many achieving extremely seeable political offices, such as Joe Carollos, Xavier Suarez, Alex Penelas, and Carlos Alvarez including a twine of Cuban posterities who became Mayors. One may see policies by such persons as motivation and furthering the Cubanisation of their country and non Americanization.[ 2 ]Another illustration was stairss taken by the Mexican authorities in supplying its citizens with maps for traversing the Rio Grande into America reasoning that this prevented the loss of lives. However, critics argued that the Mexican authorities in this blink of an eye focused on the economic benefit remittal that its subjects presented.[ 3 ]

Crowding is one of the basic disadvantages of migration in the Bahamas. The migration of people from one state to another finally leads to herding in another state. This implies an inordinate usage of some of our critical resources and may take to an instability in our natural resources. Continued population growing and migration have societal effects. For a sparsely populated state like the Bahamas, population growing can convey existent benefits. But beyond a certain point continued population growing has the possible to make tensenesss and even conflict amongst groups within this state and between other states. As aforementioned the Annual Report from the Department of Statistics shows that one in eight occupants in the Bahamas is foreign born. It is estimated that by 2025, the population will duplicate, with the Bahamas deriving an extra 337,000 occupants from outside of the state. However, the population growing of migrators is chiefly caused by natural addition, that is, the surplus of births over deceases. But in any peculiar part, migration will do population growing when the sum of in-migration exceeds the sum of out-migration. And in the Bahamas at present, migration is a greater cause of population growing and natural addition. Both population growing and migration can impact the quality of the natural environment, the likeliness of struggle, and societal coherence between cultural groups. In our position, the significance of both population growing and migration are frequently underestimated by authoritiess and non-governmental organisations. Migrants may besides convey in diseases that prevailed in their state. Pathogens, viruses and certain serious infections have a opportunity of being transferred between states through migrators. To cut down the hazard of such transportation of diseases, the Bahamas have started transporting out a showing of migrators on their reaching.

In peculiar while many Bahamians ( the populace and the authorities ) complain that Haitian subjects are utilizing wellness, instruction and societal services to the exclusion of Bahamians, St. Jacques nowadayss informations provided by the Ministry of Health ( 1991 study ) that merely 15 % of patients at the national infirmary, Princess Margaret Hospital, were Haitian subjects. Similarly, usage of the educational system by Haitian subjects from studies made in 1991 and 2005 show that 7.85 % and 8.85 % of pupils, severally, are Haitian subjects ( Stubbs, 1994, Bain, 2005 ) . She concludes hence that the “ job ” is less about Haitian subjects utilizing services but more about Bahamian concerns sing national and cultural sovereignty, what is known in the Bahamian imperativeness as “ creolization ” . In her decisions, St. Jacques determines that in fact, the 2nd coevalss of Bahamian-born kids of Haitian migrators are good assimilated, have obtained an instruction and for all purposes and intents are “ Bahamian ” . The “ Haitian job ” has metamorphosed from the flagellum of illegal migrators into a job of allowing citizenship to “ Haitian

As the universe stands on the threshold and threshold of going globally integrated, the Bahamas will necessarily hold to revise its present migration policy construction to stipulate what type of migrators we are traveling to encompass. In add-on, as regional ties become stronger and new hemispheric trade understandings become implemented, the Bahamian public will finally hold to larn to appreciate and accept the variegations that already exist. It is imperative for Bahamians of all walks of life to understand the power of a diverse skilled and unskilled labor force in our chase for continue national development and planetary integrating. Possibly, after debating the issues environing migrators the Bahamian people will put all economic concerns aside and take a policy that stresses human rights, or domestic partizan advantage. However, the public ought to cognize of the economic effects of migration, and the possible economic additions from giving higher precedence to more skilled migrators. Bahamians should be to the full cognizant of the monetary value they will pay if the state sticks with a migration policy that minimizes or ignores economic benefits.

The longer term benefits and costs of migration in the Bahamas are really hard to quantify and gauge in the absence of existent qualitative and quantitative informations. Much depends on: the types of people who choose to migrate from one state to another, the easiness with which they assimilate into the Bahamas, whether they find full-time employment and the extent to which a rise in labour migration affects an addition in the authorities capital outgo. Whether workers who come to the Bahamas decide to remain in the longer term this may affect members of their extended household fall ining them or whether they regard migration as basically a impermanent exercising ( e.g. to derive makings, learn some English ) before traveling back to their state of beginning must besides be factored into position when analyzing the overall issues related to migration. As aforesaid migrators may increase unemployment in certain countries, but this in many cases can be compensated by them raising the overall degree of demand, like lodging and household-related goods, needs etc. This promotes both a higher degree and a wider scope of goods and services produced, exciting the economic system and occupation growing. Migrants besides bring new accomplishments and experience to the recipient state. They help to cut down labour deficits for skilled forces, and besides attract international bargainers through their foreign cognition and linguistic communication accomplishments.

Harmonizing to the ILO, “ modern-day migrators overpoweringly do what fledglings have ever done ; easy, frequently distressingly, but rather assuredly, embrace the cultural norms that are apart of life in the Bahamas. Still as a purported Christian state, we must continually inquire ourselves whether or non we are making plenty. Do we have the right establishments in topographic point, and have our bing establishments been structured to suit the demands and gifts of our state ‘s newest members? As a state we can non in any case rely on mass in-migration to work out the jobs originating from an unequal agricultural industry and our alleged labor deficits in the fishing industry and other domestic countries. Mass in-migration is non an effectual solution to these jobs. To the extent that they are existent, such jobs can merely be efficaciously tackled by mobilising the under-utilized endowments and energies of the bing population. This does non intend that there is no economic benefit at all from in-migration. It will ever be in our corporate involvement to acknowledge skilled and gifted people. But this is go oning already.