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Aid or Immigration?

The government is committed to protecting the aid budget. Frances Cairncross asks whether a more relaxed policy on economic migration might help the developing world more.

Despite a general policy of austerity and cut backs, the budget for development aid has been ring fenced by the coalition government. Frances Cairncross asks whether a more relaxed immigration policy might be a better way for the UK to help the developing world.

The official aid budget is dwarfed by a private form of help for the developing world: remittances sent home by immigrants working in richer countries.

So should governments keen to help the developing world encourage migration and remittances as a replacement for state-funded aid? "They have the key advantage that the people who send them know the people who are supposed to be receiving them... There's less opportunity for corruption and for waste... and they might have lower overhead costs," argues Owen Barder of the Center for Global Development.

Frances Cairncross, rector of Exeter College, Oxford and former managing editor of The Economist, explores the limits of this free market alternative to state-funded development aid.

Contributors include:

Steve Baker
Conservative MP for Wycombe

Dilip Ratha
Migration and remittances expert from the World Bank and the University of Sussex

Owen Barder
Senior fellow of Washington DC think-tank, the Center for Global Development

Hetty Kovach
Senior policy adviser to Oxfam

Devesh Kapur
Director of the Centre for the Advanced Study of India at the University of Pennsylvania

Onyekachi Wambu
From the African Foundation for Development, or AFFORD

Alex Oprunenco
Head of international programmes with Moldovan think-tank, Expert Grup

Professor Paul Collier
Author of The Bottom Billion and director at the Oxford University Centre for the study of African Economies

Producers: Helen Grady and Daniel Tetlow.

Available now

30 minutes

Last on

Sun 9 Oct 2011 21:30


  • Mon 3 Oct 2011 20:30
  • Sun 9 Oct 2011 21:30

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